Current Research

Jul 10 2023

Yonson Ahn has published two new articles in the European Journal of Korean Studies

As a guest editor for the Special Section on Korean Migration in Europe in European Journal of Korean Studies, Yonson Ahn published the following two articles.  

1) Yonson Ahn. “Maternal Practices of Korean Healthcare Workers in Germany"  European Journal of Korean Studies, vol. 22 no.2 (2023), 11- 43,    

In this article, Yonson Ahn explores mothering practices primarily between the 1960s and 1990s in the families of Korean migrant healthcare workers drawing on personal accounts. They migrated to the former West Germany as “guest workers" and resided in Germany over the course of their working lives and/or returned to South Korea. This study charts the manner in which these migrant mothers navigated and balanced competing social discourses around mothering that emerged from the different cultural and historical backgrounds in a new host society. Special attention is paid to the way in which mothering is negotiated and experienced by migrant mothers in gendered family roles over the time—the period from childhood to adulthood—spent in the host country. Various practices and strategies for childcare arrangements and education in sustaining a migrant family in the host country are discussed. Another salient question to explore is the way the migrants' ethnic culture and values inform their ethno-specific mothering practices. In this respect, the demands, and aspirations of cross-cultural mothering to raise children with dual- cultural competence in both the culture of origin and that of destination are explored.  

2) Co-authored with Jihye Kim, Yonson Ahn has published another article on Korean migration in Europe.    

Jihye Kim & Yonson Ahn, “Gradual, Diverse, Complex—and Unnoticed: Korean Migration in Europe", European Journal of Korean Studies, vol. 22, no. 2 (2023): 1-10.    

Despite the long and interesting migration history of Koreans to Europe and  the constant and increased mobilities and movements between the two regions, in general, Korean migration is an area that has been substantially understudied, even in terms of the three major destination countries of the Germany, UK, and France. Korean migration in Europe has had a variety of motivations and followed dynamic trajectories in each European nation. This study helps to make up for current deficiencies, addressing issues previously underexplored and contributing to the development of existing theories and concepts in migration studies.