Overview

Love and family life in the global age: grandparents in Salonika and their grandson in London speak together every evening via Skype. A U.S. citizen and her Swiss husband fret over large telephone bills and high travel costs. A European couple can finally have a baby with the help of an Indian surrogate mother.

In their new book, Ulrich Beck and Elisabeth Beck-Gernsheim investigate all types of long-distance relationships, marriages and ...
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Distant Love

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Overview

Love and family life in the global age: grandparents in Salonika and their grandson in London speak together every evening via Skype. A U.S. citizen and her Swiss husband fret over large telephone bills and high travel costs. A European couple can finally have a baby with the help of an Indian surrogate mother.

In their new book, Ulrich Beck and Elisabeth Beck-Gernsheim investigate all types of long-distance relationships, marriages and families that stretch across countries, continents and cultures. These long-distance relationships comprise so many different forms of what they call ‘world families’, by which they mean love and intimate relationships between individuals living in, or coming from, different countries or continents. In all their various forms these world families share one feature in common: they are the focal point in which different aspects of the globalized world become embodied in the personal lives of individuals. Whether they like it or not, lovers and relatives in these families find themselves confronting the world in the inner space of their own lives. The conflicts between the developed and developing worlds come to the surface in world families- they acquire faces and names, creating confusion, surprise, anger, joy, pleasure and pain at the heart of everyday life.

This path-breaking book will appeal to a wide readership interested in the changing character of love in our times.
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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
''Distant Love is a rich and provocative book, andcontinues the unique contributions made by its authors to theanalysis of globalisation and the culture of late modernity. Thereare some very big ideas here, and the huge themes and issues arebrought on form the wings to take a bow - this is from beginning toend, an invitation to open up reseach into the eplethora of issuesand areas it brings into the light.''
Les Gofton, Times Higher Education Supplement

''The intimate and personal dimensions of globalization have notreceived as much attention as finance, environment, and conflict.They are also important, however, and exert a shaping influence onboth individual lives and sociocultural change. It is a pleasure tosee full-length attention from Beck and Beck-Gernsheim who bringboth sociological insight and personal sensitivity to this timelyaccount of Love at a Distance.''
Craig Calhoun, Director, London School of Economics andPolitical Science

''Just as there are global firms, so there are global families,the authors observe. A German man marries a Chinese woman. AnAmerican couple adopts a Guatemalan baby. A Korean farmer takes aFilipina mail order bride. A child is born of a Spanish ovum, aDanish sperm and an Indian womb. Do such families bring homeconflicts between East and West, rich and poor nations, or are theypioneers in cosmopolitanism? In this wide-ranging book and originalbook, the authors explore a key truth—increasingly unfoldingin our own living rooms.''
Arlie Russell Hochschild, University of California at Berkelyand author of The Outsourced Self and So How’s the Family'and other essays

''This path-breaking overview of ‘distant love’traces the ways globalization is embodied and interiorized withinthe domains of personal affect and desire. Beck and Beck- Gernsheimdemonstrate that contemporary marriage, family, kinship andreproduction are not contained by national systems of law, stateborders, or inequalities of wealth, power, gender, andracialization.''
Nina Glick Schiller, University of Manchester

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780745679945
  • Publisher: Wiley
  • Publication date: 12/18/2013
  • Sold by: Barnes & Noble
  • Format: eBook
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 220
  • File size: 730 KB

Meet the Author

Ulrich Beck is one of the world's leading sociologists and social thinkers, well-known for his bestselling book Risk Society. He is Emeritus Professor at the University of Munich and Professor of Sociology at the LSE.

Elisabeth Beck-Gernsheim is Visiting Professor at the University of Trondheim. Her previous books include The Normal Chaos of Love (co-authored with Ulrich Beck).

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Table of Contents

Translator's Note vii

Introduction 1

1 Globalization of Love and Intimacy: The Rise of World Families 4

2 Two Countries, One Couple: Tales of Mutual Understanding and Misunderstanding 20

3 Love Has Two Enemies: Distance and Closeness 44

4 Cosmopolitan Communities of Fate 67

5 Intimate Migrations: Women Marrying for a Better Life 77

6 Love Displaced: Migrant Mothers 103

7 Male Hegemony in Decline? Why Women Gain Power in World Families 123

8 Transnational Family Networks: Winners of Globalization? 138

9 My Mother Was a Spanish Ovum: Baby Tourism and Global Patchwork Families 144

10 The Intimate is Global: The Model of Distant Love 166

11 Are World Families Pioneers of Cosmopolitanism? 183

References and Bibliography 194

Index 208

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