Rurally rooted cross-border migrant workers from Myanmar, Covid-19,
and agrarian movements
Saturnino M. Borras Jr...Chunyu Wang, Jingzhong Ye
Corresponding authors: Saturnino M. Borras Jr., e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
Agriculture and Human Values, Published online
Abstract: This paper examines the situation of rurally rooted cross-border migrant workers from Myanmar during the Covid-19 pandemic. It looks at the circumstances of the migrants prior to the global health emergency, before exploring possibilities for a post-pandemic future for this stratum of the working people by raising critical questions addressed to agrarian movements. It does this by focusing on the nature and dynamics of the nexus of land and labour in the context of production and social reproduction, a view that in the context of rurally rooted cross-border migrant workers necessarily requires interrelated perspectives on labour, agrarian, and food justice struggles. This requires a rethinking of the role of land, not as a factor in either production or social reproduction, but as a central component in both spheres simultaneously. The question is not ‘whether’ it is necessary and desirable to forge multi-class coalitions and struggles against external capital, while not losing sight of the exploitative relations within rural communities and the household; rather, the question is ‘how’ to achieve this. It will require a messy recursive process, going back and forth between theoretical exploration and practical politics.
Keywords: Migrant workers; Farmworkers; Covid-19 pandemic; Myanmar; Food sovereignty
To link to this article: https://doi.org/10.1007/s10460-021-10262-6