Mobility Narratives and Shifting Identities

  • Rosie RobertsEmail author


This chapter examines how people perform and revise, through personal stories, their multiple identities and social locations. Participants draw upon narrative resources to interpret and re-construct their experiences while also struggling against their embodied lives as something not fully of their own making. I show how people occupy a range of subject positions and identities, which are constituted through their narrative practices and the intersection of their different life contexts (home, work, leisure) and social and cultural locations (e.g. ethnicity, gender, class, nationality, professional and familial roles). A double layer of identity formation exists: (1) the recounting of experience and (2) reflection and recalibration of the experience, over time. Drawing upon three participant case studies, I examine narratives told in relation to whether they describe their multiple attachments and identities as chosen for themselves, ascribed to them by others, or as a combination of the two. The chapter uses the metaphor of ‘cicatrix’ to represent the ways that narrative practices are used to mediate and make sense of mobile lives.


Migration Identity Narrative Storytelling Time Space 


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© Springer Nature Singapore Pte Ltd. 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of Creative IndustriesUniversity of South AustraliaAdelaideAustralia

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