Editorial: The shadows of enlargement: Theorising mobility and inequality in a changing Europe
Keywords:Migration, Mobility, Social inequalities, Europe, Enlargement, Mobility Turn
This introductory article of the special issue is based on the criticism of the sedentarist lens used in migration studies on social inequalities. It is organised around two questions: In what ways have forms of inequality and patterns of migration in the enlarged Europe been changed, and how should the nexus between migration and social inequality be rethought after the ‘mobility turn’ in the social sciences? First, the article proposes that the mobility turn and transnational sociology be combined to approach varieties of geographic mobility in the current Europe and that inequality analysis be conceptualised from a ‘mobile perspective’, meaning that forms of mobility and patterns of inequality be considered as mutually reinforcing. Second, Europe is considered as a fragmented and multi-sited societal context, which is co-produced by current patterns of mobility. The article discusses recent societal shifts such as supranationalisation and the end of socialism in the Eastern part of Europe (among many others) and identifies the concept of assemblage as a useful heuristic tool both for migration studies and European studies. Third, the final part illustrates how the contributions collected in this special issue address the challenges of the sedentarist lens and provide conceptual solutions to the analytical problems in question.
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