Chinese golden visa migrants in Budapest: for the sake of our children
Fanni Beck Visiting Researcher at CIES-Iscte PhD at Central European University Visiting lecturer at ELTE (Eötvös Loránd University) “My PhD in social anthropology focuses on the emerging patterns of middle-class outmigration from China as they evince the country’s restructuring as a market economy and its subsequent repositioning within the global hierarchy. My case study of Chinese Golden Visa immigration to Budapest concentrates on the shift from economic accumulation driving migration decision making to non-economic pursuits centering around children and their upbringing. The narratives told by this middle class on the run provide an intimate take on the less glorious perspective of China’s vast socio-economic transformation. Acknowledging the centrality of children in this new phase of migration, my research identifies a link between the One Child Policy and accompanying child-rearing ideologies as the primary drive for migration and thus focuses on transnational family strategies. Reflecting authoritarian China’s inconsistent and contradictory incorporation into the neoliberal capitalist world-system, I argue that the parenting ideologies put forward by the truth regimes of the centralized state and the liberalizing market are deeply fraught with antagonisms, simultaneously promoting an individualist and collectivist ideal of the child who is autonomous, independent, and innovative, but nonetheless filial, obedient, and submissive. In this talk I discuss how this contradiction inherent to parenting ideologies triggers the act of emigration and makes a lasting impact on the ways in which migratory presents are perceived and futures are imagined.” Fanni Beck is a visiting lecturer at ELTE (Eötvös Loránd University) in Asian anthropology and a PhD student in the department of Sociology and Social Anthropology at Central European University. Her background is in Chinese Studies complemented by studies in cultural anthropology and nationalism studies. Fanni’s most recent publication is with Pál Nyíri, ‘Europe’s new Bildungsbürger? Chinese migrants in search of a pure land’, DIASPORA, 21 February, 2020.