Retrospective Narratives of the Brokering Roles Assumed by Child Migrants Folllowing Resettlement

Prof Doc Thesis


Crutchley, R. 2022. Retrospective Narratives of the Brokering Roles Assumed by Child Migrants Folllowing Resettlement. Prof Doc Thesis University of East London School of Education and Communities https://doi.org/10.15123/uel.8qxw2
AuthorsCrutchley, R.
TypeProf Doc Thesis
Abstract

The resettlement practices of (im)migrating communities into Global North countries has long been the focus of academic research. This thesis explores the pivotal role that children play in this resettlement process, through their roles as cultural and linguistic brokers, specifically the extent to which child brokers are exercising agency, and the factors which maximise or constrain this agency within the context of family hierarchies and other societal structures. Using Biographical Narrative Interpretive Method, (Chamberlayne, Rustin and Wengraf, 2002; Wengraf, 2004) the project elicits retrospective narratives from five adults who engaged in myriad brokering roles during their childhood. The research positions (Bio)ecological Systems Theory (Bronfenbrenner, 1979; Bronfenbrenner and Morris, 1998, 2006) as a sociological framework for identifying the macro and micro factors impacting upon children’s cultural and linguistic brokering roles. The alignment between the chosen theoretical framework and the BNIM methodology in the context of children’s cultural and linguistic brokering roles is a key feature of this research. The research findings indicate that brokering activities take place across a range of formal and informal contexts, with children deploying complex metalinguistic and cultural negotiation skills from an early age and into adulthood. Many of the brokering roles suggest children exercise varying degrees of agency in situational contexts, influencing family practices and contributing to the resettlement process. Retrospective perceptions of these roles reflect shifting interpretations of the challenges and benefits for their families and for the children themselves, mediated by such factors as their age, sense of efficacy, family expectations, duration, frequency and context of the brokering activities. Finally, I critique normative constructions of childhood, and analyse the significance of sociocultural factors on child brokering practices and their positioning within communities.
The application of Bioecological Systems Theory has revealed the importance of establishing conceptual frameworks for exploring child brokering roles which inform policy and practice across relevant academic and societal contexts.

Year2022
PublisherUniversity of East London
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)https://doi.org/10.15123/uel.8qxw2
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Publication dates
Online10 Aug 2022
Publication process dates
Submitted16 Jun 2022
Deposited10 Aug 2022
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