Thais started to migrate to Germany around the 1960s, and it is statistically evident that the feminisation of Thai migration through marriage to Germans has continued to the present day (Federal Statistics Office of Germany, 2016). Women account for almost 87 percent of all Thais in Germany. Marriages of Thai women to German or foreign husbands account for 94 percent of marriages in Germany involving Thai nationals, compared to only six percent of Thai men married to German or foreign wives. In 2015, the total number of Thais in Germany was 58,784; however, only 43 percent of Thais were registered as “labour” under the German employment system. This paper investigates the employment dilemma of Thai marriage migrants after implementation of the new Residence Act of 2005. First, it sheds light on the underlying problems that hinder Thai marriage migrants’ potential as full-time labourers and provides better understanding of why highly-educated Thai marriage migrants cannot fully integrate into the German labour market. Second, it examines the Thai diaspora and explores the present-day trans-nationalism of Thai marriage migrants in Germany. Finally, it applies Pierre Bourdieu’s theoretical concept of capital, habitus and social space to better understand Thai marriage migrants’ career choices in the German milieu. Qualitative interviews with 38 informants and a quantitative questionnaire filled out by 125 additional respondents were conducted between 2016 and 2017, providing one of the most comprehensive researches on Thai marriage migrants in Germany to date.
May 23, 2018 Time: 13:30 – 14:30 hrs. Room Srabua (109)