Brides without Borders: New Topographies of Violence and the Future of Law in an Era of Transnational Citizen-Subjects

Document Type


Publication Date



Columbia University School of Law


This Article examines the phenomenon of transnational abandonment, or what has emerged in media and legal discourses as the figure of the "NRI abandoned bride." In particular, this Article investigates the potential of the NRI abandoned bride for advancing a more transnational approach to jurisprudence involving family law and child custody issues; and the extent to which the US. and Indian governments have responded to the problem of NRI abandonment, given the distinct challenge of advocating for women across national boundaries, and in the absence of a coordinated system of intergovernmental communication and meaningful cross-border advocacy networks. By tracing the figure of the NRI bride in and through these multiple national, transnational, legislative and jurisdictional entanglements, this Article aims to complicate legal theory, which has resisted meaningful engagement with the altered jurisdictions globalization has produced.