Return visits of the young Albanian second generation in Europe: contrasting themes and comparative host-country perspectives

Vathi, Zana and King, Russell (2011) Return visits of the young Albanian second generation in Europe: contrasting themes and comparative host-country perspectives. Mobilities, 6 (4). pp. 503-518. ISSN 1745-0101

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Abstract

Research on the links of the second generation to their parental homeland, and return visits in particular, is largely lacking, while the case of the Albanian second generations return mobilities is completely unexplored. This paper draws on in-depth interviews with 75 Albanian teenagers in London, Thessaloniki and Florence, and thus brings a multi-sited perspective on their attitudes towards and experiences of homeland visits. Contrasts are drawn between positive themes emerging from the narratives, which are about belonging, family and nature in Albania, and negative impressions which relate to poverty and traditionalism, and a developing sense of boredom as teenagers get older. An attempt is then made to relate some of these contrasting experiences to differences in social integration in the three different host-society contexts. The concluding discussion reaffirms the uniqueness of the Albanian case, both in terms of this being the first exploration of the transnational orientations of one of Europes newest second generations, and in relation to the home-country context of a liberalising ex-communist country still in a state of economic backwardness.

Item Type: Article
Keywords: Second generation; return visits; Albanian immigrants; extended family; social integration; transnational social fields
Schools and Departments: School of Global Studies > Geography
Depositing User: Zana Vathi
Date Deposited: 21 Feb 2012 10:02
Last Modified: 19 May 2015 13:58
URI: http://sro.sussex.ac.uk/id/eprint/37732
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