Becoming ‘a Londoner’: Migrants’ experiences and habits of everyday (im)mobilities over the life course

Everyday (im)mobilities continuously emerge out of dynamic interactions between bodies, objects and environments. Demonstrating the importance of past behaviours, life course and context, mobility biographies research has supplemented and advanced previous understandings of the factors which sustain and transform everyday mobilities. Despite this, its empirical and theoretical scope remains limited. The primary focus on certain life stages and key events as triggers of change in long-term travel behaviour has meant the effects of small-scale, short-term and multi-directional changes have largely been overlooked or ignored. The author argues this failure is in part due to prevailing conceptions of experience, habit and environment. Engaging primarily with John Dewey’s writings and empirical materials generated with New Zealand migrants in London, the authors demonstrates how experience and habit can instead be understood as dynamic, relational and temporal processes. These New Zealanders, like other migrants, are shown to occupy multiple subject positions between, and experience complex dislocations and engagements with the practicalities of, places of departure and settlement. Their accounts help to foreground how events and happenings that continuously unfold in the everyday lives of migrants and non-migrants are undergone, negotiated, contested and fraught with uncertainty, innovation and ambivalence. Stretching across time and space, the cumulative, reinforcing and transformative effects of these processes do not coincide with pre-defined events but nonetheless change how movement, dwelling and subjectivities are differentially experienced and embodied.


  • English

Media Info

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01723979
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Files: TRIS
  • Created Date: Nov 30 2019 3:23PM