Ethnology: An International Journal of Cultural and Social Anthropology
Women household employees -- Middle East -- Social conditions, Sri Lankans -- Employment -- Foreign countries, Sri Lankans -- Migrations
New labor opportunities have drawn Sri Lankan women to work as domestic servants in the Middle East. Many migrants complain that their remittances "burn like oil," disappearing without a trace. The gendered discourse on burning remittances both draws on and contradicts an older cultural system that fetishizes money. The emerging logic provides symbolic resources for women to spend their remittances on advancements for the nuclear family, distancing themselves from other kin. (Migration, remittances, fetishism, Sri Lanka, Middle East)
Gamburd, M. (2004). Money That Burns Like Oil: A Sri Lankan Cultural Logic of Morality and Agency. Ethnology, 43(2), 167-184.