In this article we examine whether migrants' perceived discrimination in the country of settlement leads to an increase of their transnational involvement. So far, this so-called ‘reactive transnationalism’ has not been studied extensively. Based on literature on discrimination and transnationalism, reactive transnationalism is expected to be most prominent among socioeconomically successful migrants, particularly among males and those who consider themselves Muslims. Our research among middle-class migrants in Rotterdam, the Netherlands, indeed shows that the more respondents experienced discrimination, the more transnationally involved they are, both regarding transnational identifications and transnational activities. While no gender difference was found regarding reactive transnational activities, for women perceived discrimination proves to lead to stronger instead of weaker transnational identifications than for men. The fact that no difference was found between Muslim and non-Muslim respondents regarding reactive transnationalism suggests that, despite heated public debates about ‘Islam’, in the Netherlands, ethnic divides – being considered as ‘Dutch’ or ‘non-Dutch’ – are even more prominent than religious ones.

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Global Networks (Oxford): a journal of transnational affairs
Centre for Rotterdam Cultural Sociology (CROCUS)

Snel, E., 'T Hart, M. (Margrietha), & van Bochove, M. (2016). Reactive transnationalism: homeland involvement in the face of discrimination. Global Networks (Oxford): a journal of transnational affairs, 16(4), 511–530. doi:10.1111/glob.12125