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Silver, Alexis M.; Edelblute, Heather B.; Mouw, Ted; & Chavez, Sergio (2018). Fractured Families, Connected Community: Emotional Engagement in a Transnational Social Network. International Migration, 56(6), 153-168.


Family separation due to international migration is an emotional hardship endured by millions in both origin and destination countries. In spite of substantial barriers impeding reunification, families often continue to centre their lives emotionally around their loved ones. Yet they also rely on proximate and cross‐border network ties for support. Social networks impact the ways in which families experience separation, but studies about transnational families have been slow to incorporate social network data. We address this gap by examining family separation within the context of a binational social network. Our findings suggest that both local and transnational social networks affect the experience of family separation for individuals in the countries of origin and destination. Moreover, our findings demonstrate the complexities associated with return migration, as this movement often initiates a new familial separation.


Reference Type

Journal Article

Year Published


Journal Title

International Migration


Silver, Alexis M.
Edelblute, Heather B.
Mouw, Ted
Chavez, Sergio