Renowned French scholar and politician Dr. Catherine Withol de Wenden gave a lecture titled ‘An Analysis of Female Migration’ at the Shahe campus of China Foreign Affairs University (CFAU) on 29th March 2018. The lecture, presided over by Associate Professor Jin Junhua, director of the French Teaching and Research Office at CFAU, was targeted at the first-year postgraduates majoring in French and was one of the major events of the 2018 French Festival.
Dr. Catherine Withol de Wenden graduated from Sciences Po (Paris Institute of Political Studies) and the University of Paris (Pantheon-Sorbonne University). As head of the French National Center for Scientific Research (CNRS), she has been committed to the research on international migration for 30 years and has achieved great successes. She also teaches at Sciences Po and several other universities, and serves as an expert at various essential organizations, including the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) and the Council of Europe. In recognition of her contributions, she was awarded the title of Knight of the Legion of Honor.
The lecture was divided into two sections. The first section began with a brief introduction to the international migration situation. According to Dr. Catherine Withol de Wenden, due to the imbalanced development of different regions, global migration is affected by various factors, including population, economic conditions, ecological environment, regional conflicts, and even passport statuses. Currently, though it is relatively easy for migrants to go abroad, there are always strict limits to their immigration into developed countries. This has become a trend nowadays. Next, through an analysis of some examples concerning women in the Philippines, China, Africa, North America and Muslim countries, Dr. Catherine Withol de Wenden elaborated on the dilemmas facing female migrants. It should be noted that in developed countries there are more female migrants than male ones, while women find fewer opportunities to migrate to less developed countries, since migrants in these countries often serve as manual workers. Moreover, compared with male migrants, it is more difficult for female migrants to safeguard their rights and interests and enjoy equal opportunities in society. What’s worse, some are even unaware of their legitimate rights. Hence, as Dr. Catherine Withol de Wenden points out, these issues remain unsolved.
The second part was a Q&A. The questions from the French majors as well as those teachers in attendance covered a wide range of subjects, including the refugee flow facing Europe and Turkey, the migration and aging problems in Japan and the social status of highly educated women and child migrants; all of which were answered in detail by Dr. Catherine Withol de Wenden. As the Q&A session came to an end, the audience expressed their enjoyment of the event with thunderous applause.