'Women' versus 'Breadwinners': Exploring Labour Market Dynamics, Agency & Identity Among Migrant Nurses from Kerala (India)

  • Sumangala Damodaran Ambedkar University
Keywords: international care chain, Kerala nurses, migration, primary breadwinner,


This paper examines the relationship between migration, the availability of paid work and identity (as workers and as women) of migrant nurses from Kerala, India working in Delhi. It explores the dynamics of labour market formation, autonomy and choice for this group of women who more often than not enjoy primary breadwinner status in their families. It argues that migrant nursing employment provides interesting insights into the way women perceive as well as manoeuvre their positions as workers in their work contexts and as women in their family contexts, in certain cases achieving significant transformations and in other cases reinforcing existing norms.