48.6 Migrantship and old age: Intersecting social positions

Wednesday, August 1, 2012: 12:00 PM
Faculty of Economics, TBA
Oral Presentation
Laura MACHAT-FROM , National Institute for the Study of Ageing and Later Life, Linköping University, Norrköping, Sweden
While the concept of intersectionality has increasingly established itself in the social sciences over the past two decades, the intersections of some social positions have received more attention than others. One intersection that has received less attention thus far is that between old age and migrantship (i.e. ‘ethnic otherness’ resulting from migration). This presentation addresses this intersection with a particular focus on identity and identification pertaining to these two positions (and, where relevant, other positions such as gender and class as well). The base for this discussion is empirical data in the form of 24 interviews with individuals aged between 55 and 79 who were born in 12 different countries and have lived in Sweden between 18 and 61 years. Informed by a social constructionist perspective, the analysis explores the hows and whens of identifications with various social positions, with a particular interest in the interplay between migrantship and old age. The aim of the presentation is hence to contribute to our theoretical understanding of how different social positions intersect and mediate constructions of identities.