African migrant women in the aged care sector: Conceptualising experiences of racism, micro-aggressions and Otherness

Temi Olasunkanmi-Alimi, Kristin Natalier, Monique Mulholland

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Existing commentary rarely systematically acknowledges racism in the Australian aged care field. This article begins to address this gap through a detailed focus on the experiences of 30 African migrant women workers, one of the fastest growing groups employed in aged care across Australia. Drawing on data generated through in-depth, semi-structured interviews, we argue that racist micro-aggressions, specifically micro-insults and micro-assaults, were a commonplace experience for this group of workers. Micro-insults and micro-assaults were perpetrated interpersonally, and also drew upon and reinforced colonial discourses about backwardness, inferiority and Otherness. We conclude that for these carers, micro-aggressions have a two-fold effect: they express everyday racism in interaction, and they position African migrant carers as unwelcome and unable to care for and care about clients.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-17
Number of pages17
JournalJournal of Sociology
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 14 Jun 2021

Keywords

  • African migrants
  • African women
  • aged care
  • micro-aggressions
  • migrants
  • racism

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