Revisiting the Importance of Distance in Transnational Family Lives: How and why Danish migrant parents transmit ‘Danishness’ to their children settled in Australia



In recent years, a body of research has aimed to ‘de-demonise’ distance in transnational family lives, arguing that transnational families compensate for physical co-presence with other means of caring and ‘being there’ for each other, particularly by way of new information and communication technologies (ICTs). Although many researchers claim to study transnational families, they mostly study the relationships between ageing parents in ‘home’ countries and the migrant son or daughter overseas. In this article, I propose to broaden that scope to include generations further apart too. In analysing how and why Danish migrant parents work to transmit their Danish culture and language to their children settled in Australia, I argue that geographical distance continues to matter, not least to the relationships between grandparents and grandchildren separated by this distance but also due to the complicated relationship between migrants and parents which is fostered by separation.


transnational familiesdistanceemotional labourintergenerational transmissionDanishness
  • Year: 2020
  • Volume: 10 Issue: 1
  • Page/Article: 34-50
  • DOI: 10.2478/njmr-2019-0025
  • Published on 1 Mar 2020
  • Peer Reviewed