Middle East Studies

Eating in Dubai: The Labor Conditions of Migrant Domestic Workers

Thursday, November 12, 2015

4:00pm – 5:30pm

This talk describes how the absence of labor protection in the United Arab Emirates has resulted in a diversity of labor experiences among domestic workers. Variations are established via a discussion of the eating patterns of domestic workers, whose experiences fall into three categories of eating: a) dehumanization; b) infantilization; c) recognition. Recognizing variations in food consumption questions static generalizations of domestic workers in countries considered worst destinations as victims of human trafficking while raising the question of why the absence of labor protection has not resulted in their rampant abuse. As argued, morals mediate their labor and reduces the likelihood of abuse.

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