Health, wealth or family ties? Why Turkish work migrants return from Germany

Razum O, Sahin-Hodoglugil NN, Polit K (2005)
JOURNAL OF ETHNIC AND MIGRATION STUDIES 31(4): 719-739.

Journal Article | Published | English

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Abstract
In the 1960s and 1970s, hundreds of thousands of Turkish workers migrated to Germany. Some settled there, others returned to Turkey after a few years. To explore how the experience of life between two cultures and in transnational families affected the decision to return, we conducted focus-group sessions with male returnees in Turkey who had spent varying lengths of time in Germany. Return was rarely based on purely economic or health-related motives; value-oriented and emotional themes almost always played a role. There were complex interactions between particular themes, e.g. perceived health status and economic success. We organised our findings into three 'ideal types': first, the I nostalgic' returned migrant who is facing socio-economic problems in Turkey and has a transfigured notion of life in Germany which he would like to but cannot resume; second, the 'cultural traditionalist' who considers Turkish culture superior and left Germany without remorse after having made some money; and third, the 'player of two systems' who thrives in both Turkey and Germany. This typology helps to structure and understand the complex themes underlying the decision to return-migrate.
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Razum O, Sahin-Hodoglugil NN, Polit K. Health, wealth or family ties? Why Turkish work migrants return from Germany. JOURNAL OF ETHNIC AND MIGRATION STUDIES. 2005;31(4):719-739.
Razum, O., Sahin-Hodoglugil, N. N., & Polit, K. (2005). Health, wealth or family ties? Why Turkish work migrants return from Germany. JOURNAL OF ETHNIC AND MIGRATION STUDIES, 31(4), 719-739.
Razum, O., Sahin-Hodoglugil, N. N., and Polit, K. (2005). Health, wealth or family ties? Why Turkish work migrants return from Germany. JOURNAL OF ETHNIC AND MIGRATION STUDIES 31, 719-739.
Razum, O., Sahin-Hodoglugil, N.N., & Polit, K., 2005. Health, wealth or family ties? Why Turkish work migrants return from Germany. JOURNAL OF ETHNIC AND MIGRATION STUDIES, 31(4), p 719-739.
O. Razum, N.N. Sahin-Hodoglugil, and K. Polit, “Health, wealth or family ties? Why Turkish work migrants return from Germany”, JOURNAL OF ETHNIC AND MIGRATION STUDIES, vol. 31, 2005, pp. 719-739.
Razum, O., Sahin-Hodoglugil, N.N., Polit, K.: Health, wealth or family ties? Why Turkish work migrants return from Germany. JOURNAL OF ETHNIC AND MIGRATION STUDIES. 31, 719-739 (2005).
Razum, Oliver, Sahin-Hodoglugil, NN, and Polit, K. “Health, wealth or family ties? Why Turkish work migrants return from Germany”. JOURNAL OF ETHNIC AND MIGRATION STUDIES 31.4 (2005): 719-739.
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