Everyday Conversions: Islam, Domestic Work, and South Asian Migrant Women in Kuwait
This chapter examines the assemblage of processes, policies, and systems of governance that designate and discipline South Asian migrant domestic workers into a “temporary population” in Kuwait. This assemblage positions domestic workers as dual agents of reproduction: tasked with the everyday social reproduction of Kuwaiti families, and through their remittances, the everyday provisioning of the households and communities they have migrated from. This chapter underscores how domestic workers’ “temporariness” is produced amidst—and belied by—past and present transnational connections that knit together the Gulf region and South Asia. It also examines the gendered juridicopolitical aporias that characterize the transnational domestic work sector, aporias that place domestic workers into precarious juridicopolitical positions that further reinscribe their “temporariness” in the Gulf.