Encyclopedia of Women & Islamic Cultures

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Economics: Paid Domestic Labor: Gulf and Saudi Arabia
(1,703 words)

Domestic workers – or “servants of globalization” as portrayed in the growing literature on “global domestics” – are usually mobilized to the Gulf region from countries such as India, the Philippines, Sri Lanka, Indonesia, Ethiopia, Bangladesh, Pakistan, and Vietnam, among others. They are mostly poor young women (aged 18–45), who are economically forced to leave their homes, families, and, at times, their children because of extreme poverty (resulting from the unequal distribution of global wealth) and look for work in other countries. They are hired on a two…

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Sabban, Rima, “Economics: Paid Domestic Labor: Gulf and Saudi Arabia”, in: Encyclopedia of Women & Islamic Cultures, General Editor Suad Joseph. Consulted online on 27 February 2024 <http://dx.doi.org/10.1163/1872-5309_ewic_EWICCOM_0240b>
First published online: 2009

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