Child-rearing as global security strategies: Parenting, class, and im/mobility in Taiwan and the US

My new book, Raising Global Families (Stanford 2018), uses parenting as an empirical lens to examine cultural transformation and persisting inequality in the contexts of globalisation and immigration. Juxtaposing parents in Taiwan and their immigrant counterparts in the US, I situate parents’ educational choices and child-rearing practice in a transnational social space. Regardless of whether they ever engage in personal interaction, co-ethnic parents across the Pacific are structurally interconnected through the relations of emulation, competition, distinction, and so on. I coin the concept of “global security strategies” to highlight the global contexts that situate both parents’ perception of risk and their strategies for mitigating insecurities. The cross-country, cross-class comparison demonstrates that the“global”is imagined and lived differently for families across the socioeconomic spectrum and that parents negotiate ethnic culture to respond to local opportunity structure. Child-rearing is a critical site for us to examine how different sorts of mobilities and immobilities are interconnected across locales and borders.