Ethnic return of Armenian Americans: Perspectives

  • Karolina Pawłowska
Keywords: diaspora, ethnic return, symbolic boundary, boundary maintenance, sojourners


The field research conducted among the very few Armenian Americans who have moved to Armenia showed that the phenomena of migration of the diaspora of Armenians to Armenia holds great potential both as a theoretical issue within migration studies and potentially a social phenomenon, as Armenian Americans differ from other migrants and expats in Armenia, because they carry stereotyped pre-images of that land that influence their expectations toward their future lives there. Field research conducted in Armenia in 2012 shows that the disillusionment that repatriation brings causes internal tensions and identity crises, eventually forcing migrants to redefine their role in Armenia in the framework of their contribution to the development of their homeland, often isolating them from local Armenians through diaspora practices and maintaining the symbolic boundary between these two groups of Armenians in Armenia.