W074
Neither here nor there: locating and identifying Europe

Convenors:
Julia Holdsworth (University of Hull)
Michaela Benson (University of York)
Chair:
Julia Holdsworth
Location:
MVB 1.11
Start time:
20 September, 2006 at 11:30
Session slots:
4

Short abstract:

This panel explores the part that the interrelated notions of 'Europe' and 'local' play in movements, both physical and conceptual, across European borders.

Long abstract:

Building on recent debates about Europe and European identity, this panel brings together a range of papers focussing on movements, both physical and conceptual, to explore interrelations between local identities and imaginings of supranational, European identities. Questions about the interdependency between conceptual and physical movement arise from recent European Union expansion alongside increases in temporary and permanent migration of people within Europe. The role of imaginings of Europe within these movements requires further interrogation. Fundamentally, this panel explores the fragmentations, coalescences and tensions created through movements within and across Europe. We suggest that the different ways individuals imagine themselves to be part of a wider European community, whether the European Union or a wider notion of 'Europe', impact on the identities they perform. At times, they may draw on notions of an homogenised Europe, while at other times they stress the differences between different national or local identities. Actions and choices in issues such as migration are influenced and transformed through individual employment and articulation of these imaginings in the course of daily life. We ask questions such as: What are the consequences of accession to the European Union for people in Central and Eastern Europe and in existing member states? What role does an imagining of 'Europe' play in migration between different parts of Europe? This panel invites papers that address the intertwined notions of physical and imagined movements within Europe and, in so doing, contribute to the debate about what and where Europe is. We encourage both conceptual and ethnographic contributions that engage with a range of topics to investigate the ways agents engage with and detach from the 'Europe' of their imagining in both their physical and imagined movements.