Hall, Rachel A. (2002) When is a wife not a wife? Some observations on the immigration experiences of South Asian women in West Yorkshire. Contemporary Politics, 8 (1). pp. 55-68. ISSN 13569775

This article uses black feminist analysis to explore the ways in which the racialized stereotypical image of the passive South Asian woman has informed the categorizing of this group of minority ethnic women within the system of British immigration control. Such stereotypes have led to a very specific category of 'South Asian woman' being regarded as a legitimate immigration applicant: namely that of the traditional South Asian wife dutifully going to live in the country in which her husband is settled. Using interview data from a study of South Asian women's immigration experiences, this article assesses the extent to which South Asian women entering the system of British immigration control actually fit this racialized category of 'wife'. It is also shown that those wives who sponsor a husband to come to the UK, and therefore do not fit the immigration service's assumptions of the South Asian wife, face even more difficulties, due to gender and racial discrimination within the system of British immigration control.

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