Canadian Anthropology Society (CASCA)
Volunteered - Oral Presentation Session
This paper presents the preliminary results of a legal anthropology study about the social and legal impacts of divorce among the sub-Saharan immigrant families in Montreal. Given the well-demonstrated complexity of the post-migratory reality and the context of family law in Quebec, they have an exacerbated risk of marital breakdown and suffer from devastating socio-economic consequences such as isolation, impoverishment or inability to take care of their children (Bernier, 2014; Guruge and al 2010). Indeed, the lack of knowledge of the Quebec legal system and sometime, the incompatibility between legal spheres of action (immigration law, criminal law and family law), the shame of divorce and the reassessment of the fundamental value of marriage (Mianda, 1998), the community pressures (Saris and Potvin 2009), the challenges of the childcare are all critical vectors in the negotiation of these disputes (Gherghel et Saint-Jacques 2011). Based on life-story interviews of single parent women from Africa living in Montreal and a phenomenological analysis, we intend to give a voice to these women and acknowledge their trajectories through the family separation. In this paper, we want to recognize the obstacles encountered and the resilience strategies adopted in the reconfiguration of their family. Our aim is to give a better understanding of their living conditions from a local perspective.