Return migration and development

The significance of migration cycles

Authored by: Jean-Pierre Cassarino

Routledge Handbook of Immigration and Refugee Studies

Print publication date:  October  2015
Online publication date:  October  2015

Print ISBN: 9781138794313
eBook ISBN: 9781315759302
Adobe ISBN: 9781317638773


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In 1974, in his essay on the sociology of return migration, Frank Bovenkerk mentioned the existence of numerous academic writings that in the past had dealt with returnees’ patterns of reintegration in Puerto Rico, Ireland, Italy and Jamaica, to mention but a few. He also studied a variety of concepts aimed at capturing the essence of return in migratory processes (1974: 5). His conceptual essay preceded the works done by Gmelch (1980), King et al. (1983) and Kubat (1984), who also produced key findings on return migration, across various disciplines. The academic attention paid to return migration grew together with the heightened policy debates on the return of migrant workers that followed the adoption of more selective immigration policies in the West as a result of the 1973 crisis.

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