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Multiple belongings: transnational mobility, social class, and gendered identities among Polish migrants in Norway

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Using ethnographic research in Norway and in Poland, this article focuses on the dynamics of multiple belongings of Polish migrants. It explores their experiences of belonging in relation to social class, gendered identities, and their different strategies of transnational mobility between Poland and Norway. By approaching belonging ‘from below’, we posit that it is a dynamic, processual, and socially and culturally constructed attachment to places, times, and communities, which includes experiential, practical, and affective dimensions. Considering the importance of questions of belonging and home-making in migrants’ lives, always contextually produced and read through performative reiterations, we focus on migrants’ daily routines and migratory practices, and argue that belonging is a multifaceted process, which takes on diverse forms and meanings of ‘who’ belongs to ‘what’, ‘where’ and ‘when’. Following intersectional perspective, the article aims at problematizing dependencies between mobility, gender, class, and migrants’ multiple belongings, and thereby, enhancing the understanding of the notion of belonging and its embeddedness in the inter-related social, cultural, economic, and political realms.
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Keywords: Belonging; gender; social class; transnational mobility

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Department of Ethnology and Cultural Anthropology, Jagiellonian University, Cracow, Poland 2: Department of Ethnology and Cultural Anthropology, Adam Mickiewicz University, Poznań, Poland

Publication date: January 2, 2020

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