From a metaphor through a sensitising concept to an empirically grounded concept
My previous long-term empirical research on the processes of adaptation and settling of Polish migrants in Belgium and later Vietnamese and Ukrainian migrants in Poland has provided a basis for my critical reflection on the limitations and sometimes insufficiency of the key concepts used in migration studies, especially the concept of integration (e.g. Grzymala-Kazlowska 2008a ). The political and practical usage of the latter – as well as its structural and functionalist assumptions that in order to maintain the existing socio-cultural order
relevant than the framework of ‘settlement’ and integration, it was particularly useful in analysing the mechanisms of adaptation and settling taking place among those involved in circular and temporary migration. This was more predominant among Ukrainian migrants in Poland due to the physical proximity between Poland and Ukraine and the migration regime limiting free movement of Ukrainians to Poland and hindering their processes of settling.
Investigation into the processes of anchoring/re-anchoring/un-anchoring also has practical implications for
The concept of integration, predominantly understood as migrants’ participation in the life of the receiving society, stimulated by special policies, remains a central category in migration studies in Europe. I have argued that, in spite of its prominence, integration is a highly problematic concept with substantial limitations (see, for example, Grzymala-Kazlowska 2008a, 2013a
; Grzymala-Kazlowska and Phillimore 2018 ). Its drawback is linked to its politicisation as well as its structural and functionalist provenance
Migrant adaptation and settlement constitute a key research topic today, when spatial mobility is a global feature and migrants and their descendants represent a substantial share of European and other industrialised societies (Castles and Miller 2009 ; Massey et al. 1998 ). The United Nations (UN) figures – even if treated with the particular caution required in the case of migration data – estimate that in 2017 the global stock of international migrants officially residing outside their countries of birth was over 257.7 million, with 77
This monograph argues that well-established concepts in migration studies such as ‘settlement’ and ‘integration’ do not sufficiently capture the features of adaptation and settling of contemporary migrants. Instead, it proposes the integrative and transdisciplinary concept of anchoring, linking the notions of identity, adaptation and settling while overcoming the limitations of the established concepts and underlining migrants’ efforts at recovering their feelings of security and stability. Drawing on 80 in-depth interviews with Polish migrants in the UK and Ukrainian migrants in Poland, ethnographic and autobiographical research together with an analysis of Internet blogs and forums, the book presents the author’s original concept of anchoring, underpinned by a combination of sociological and psychological perspectives, as well as demonstrating its applications. The book aims not only to provide a theoretical and methodological contribution to better understanding and examining the processes of adaptation and settling among today’s migrants, but also to highlight practical implications useful for the better support of individuals facing changes and challenges in new, complex and fluid societies.
pattern: that is, making a living through continuous regular movement across national borders, not settled but keeping strong ties with Ukraine, so it was difficult to link this mode of operation to Berry's ( 1992 ) and Portes and Zhou's ( 1993 ) conceptual frameworks of integration and assimilation.
The concept of anchoring allows an understanding of the simultaneity, temporality and flexibility of Ukrainian migrants’ attachments as well as the complexity and changeability of their ‘settlement’. It helps to capture their ‘fluid’ migration, ‘drifting
SAST research demonstrated that certain anchors restricted the participants because of those anchors’ largely involuntary and aggravating character. These could be, for instance, health issues (physical and/or mental) or addictions (e.g. alcohol abuse). Despite their negative impacts, they might represent the key points of reference, ground individuals and constitute major features structuring particular migrants’ lives. A few interviewees reflected on the negative effects of serious illnesses or accidents for their position and migration trajectory. Barbara, the
Magda's words reveal how she perceived stability through comparison to the reconstructed circumstances in the home country, rather than to standards expected in the receiving society, which can partly be the consequence of a self-reassurance and self-presentation strategy to justify her own migration choices and outcomes. Magda seemed not to take into account that her greater stability in the UK could also be linked to her life cycle (being almost 40 with an established family and professional life) and she might have equally secured similar stability in Poland
exclude those who had already been well established in the receiving societies through their spouses or partners. The interviewees had to be in their 30s and 40s and to have lived in the UK or Poland (respectively) for between one and ten years, based on the assumption that establishing anchors in a new country takes time, so it should not be examined too early, while at the same time the focus should be on intensive processes of anchoring, which can be particularly visible in the first years of migration. The interviewed migrants had to have been resident in Birmingham
prime minister has set foot on any part of Africa since 2013. There is either no diplomatic presence, or only a vestigial one, in some 16 African countries. Japan now has more embassies in Africa than Britain, and Germany more aid workers. (Kettle, 2018 )
This may be an unfair caricature but it is partly correct, as this chapter shows, and the UK’s preoccupation with migration and particularly its visa policy is also demonstrably impacting its Africa ambitions. The chapter will bring together these different elements of UK Africa policy to