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Between mobility and mobilization – lifestyle migration and the practice of European identity in political struggles

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Lifestyle migration, such as the temporary or permanent movement of European citizens to coastal areas in Southern Europe, widely responds to the freedom of movement that EU citizenship provides to all its members. Although this migration can be evaluated as an individual and rather apolitical expression of a politically intended mobility within the European Union, it may seriously alter political life within destinations. The following article presents a case study about the political mobilization of lifestyle migrants living on the Spanish Mediterranean coast. It is based on empirical research and explores narrative interviews with members of a transnationally active political pressure group that campaigns against misapplications of local and regional land use policies. The central aim of the text consists of evaluating how central actors draw on European identity within conflict negotiations that traverse diverse scales including the European level. Referring to this, the article engages with key issues in contemporary sociological debates addressed in this monograph, namely the question of how sociologists approach the study of the political in general and how imaginations of Europe and European identity are strategically appropriated within political debates.
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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Humboldt-University of Berlin (2002) and University of Frankfurt (2007)

Publication date: 01 December 2010

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