Migration as opportunity? A case study of Polish women: migrants in the UK and returnees in Poland
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University of Salford
Publication date: 2020-06-01
Problemy Polityki Społecznej 2013;23:105-121
Migration from the new European Union (EU) Member States to the United Kingdom (UK) has been identifi ed as one of the most signifi cant social phenomena of recent times and has been studied extensively, particularly since 2004. Although gendered studies of migration are now gaining recognition, there is limited literature in relation to Polish women. There is now much evidence to support the view that migrant women constitute a large proportion of international migrants; within the European context, migrant women already outnumber their male counterparts. Drawing on a review of secondary literature and preliminary fi ndings from new qualitative research undertaken in Poland and the UK, this paper explores how Polish migrant women negotiate their lives in regard to work and welfare responsibilities when exercising their rights as EU citizens. It is argued that migrant women should be seen as active decision makers and that migration may be considered as an opportunity to bring about change in relation to gender roles. It is concluded that migration presents an opportunity to re-evaluate gender norms.
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