34 / 2011
Nataša Gregorič Bon

The Material Lives and Journeys of the Women of Dhërmi/Drimades, Southern Albania


In the past decade, numerous migration studies have explored the phenomenon of mass migrations in Albania. Only a few of them have focused on the role of women in these processes. The article discusses their role and meaning through the material flows between women migrants from Dhërmi/Drimades and their husbands who stay behind in their natal village in southern Albania. Material flows are not only emblems but also agents of migrant worlds as they contribute to the formation of transnational marriages that are necessary for the construction of material flows. Material flows form a part of recipro- cal relations as they preserve and reconstruct marriage and social relationships in general. They act as insurance policies and reaffirm the habitation and the dynamic presence of the absent women migrants.
KEY WORDS: material flows, gift economy, migrant worlds, women migrants, southern Albania.

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