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Dr. Anna Xymena Wieczorek

Dr. Anna Xymena Wieczorek


Patterns of (Im)Mobility: Revisiting Migration through Biographical Experiences in Canada and Germany

(Supervisors: Martin Endreß, Trier / Barbara Thériault, Montréal)

My thesis deals with the duality between migration and mobility and propose a way to overcome it by investigating phenomena of migration through the “mobilities perspective.” In so doing, I examine the (im)mobility experiences of young adults of Polish heritage in Germany and Canada based on 47 autobiographical-narrative interviews. I asked under which circumstances (im)mobility emerges in migratory and transnational contexts, what biographical constellations are at play for the development, and how these (im)mobility experiences can be characterized. Analyzing individual trajectories, I have constructed an analytical typology of three patterns of (im)mobility: immobility, transmobility, and cosmobility. These patterns show different social configurations of (im)mobility experiences after initial migration. In-depth examinations of selected biographies reveal that the development, maintenance or shifting of each pattern in the life courses of individuals stands and falls with the constellation of specific biographical dimensions like language(s), belonging to the heritage- and destination culture, as well as family structures and social networks. The patterns of (im)mobility not only illustrate the diversity of geographical movements and their social implications and how they become meaningful experiences in a globalized world that seems to be increasingly “on the move,” but they also develop a new reading of the theories in the field of migration studies, such as the “classical” approaches of assimilation, integration, multiculturalism, as well as “new” approaches of transnationalism, diaspora, and cosmopolitanism.

Current Activities

Thesis Defense
Xymena Wieczorek successfully defended her thesis on 02 November 2016. See also: http://irtg-diversity.com/index.php?page=now-and-upcoming&article=197

Apr. - Aug. 2014
in Berlin, Germany
Dec. 2013 - Feb. 2014
in Toronto, Canada
Oct. - Dec. 2013
in Montreal, Canada

Participation in Research Schools
Jan. 12 - 17 2015
IMISCOE 3CI PhD Conference 2015: "Changing Europe - Changing Migration: Europe in the World on the Move", Erasmus University Rotterdam, Netherlands
July 20 - Aug. 3 2014
Berlin Summer School for Social Sciences – Linking Theory and Empirical Research, Wissenschaftszentrum Berlin (WZB)/ Berlin Graduate School for Social Sciences, Berlin, Germany


Fields of Study
Sociology and American Studies (B.A./M.A.) with main emphasis on Sociology of Migration and Cultural Studies, Ruhr-University Bochum

M.A.- Thesis
Migrationshintergrund und Wohnungslosigkeit -Eine vergleichende Längsschnittanalyse wohnungsloser und ehemals wohnungsloser Menschen mit Migrationshintergrund in Münster (Migration Background and Homelessness —A Comparative Longitudinal Analysis of Former Homeless and Current Homeless Persons with Migration Background in Muenster)

International Experience
University of Newcastle (Newcastle upon Tyne, England), Erasmus-Stipend

Work Experience

2010 - 2013
Research Assistant at the Chair of Sociology/ Organisation, Migration, Participation (Prof. Dr. Ludger Pries), Faculty of Social Science, Ruhr-University Bochum
2010 - 2011
Teaching Assistant for the Lecture "Introduction to Sociology", Faculty of Social Science, Ruhr-University Bochum


Migration and (Im)mobility: Biographical Experiences of Polish Migrants in Germany and Canada, (transcript: Bielefeld).
Biography En Route: Investigating Mobility Experiences through Biographical Research, in: Ursula Lehmkuhl et al. (eds.), Spaces of Difference: Conflicts and Cohabitation (Waxmann: Münster), 101-123.

Conference Presentations

Nov. 2016
Multinationales Kanada: Zwischen selektiver Zuwanderungspolitik und kulturell-pluralistischer Integrationspolitik
Tagung: Einwanderungsland Deutschland: Gesetz, Praxis und gesellschaftliches Selbstverständnis, Evangelische Akademie Loccum, 23-25/11/2016.
Jul. 2015
Making Sense of Movements: Exploring Mobility through Biography
International Conference: Embodied Experience of Transnational Movements: Historical Trajectories and Contemporary Dynamics, Bielefeld, 17/07/2015.
Jun. 2015
Mobility & Biography: Investigating Meaningful Experiences of Mobility in Individual Life Courses
Networking Conference of the IRTGS Diversity and Entre Espacios: Liminality, Trier, 10-13/06/2015.
Jan. 2015
Polish Migrants in Canada and Germany: (Im)Mobilities after Migration
IMISCOE 3CI PhD Conference: Changing Europe - Changing Migration: Europe in the World on the Move, Erasmus University, Rotterdam, Netherlands, 12-17/01/2015.
Sep. 2014
What happens after Migration? (Im)Mobilities among Polish Transmigrants
International Conference: Spaces of Difference: Conflicts and Cohabitation/ Espaces des Différences: Luttes et Partages/ Räume der Differenz: Konflikte und Formen der Kohabitation, Université de Montréal, Canada, 13-14/09/2014.
May/Jun. 2014
(Im)Mobilities: Polish-Canadian Transmigrants between Settledness and Cosmopolitan Openness
Ninth Biennial MESEA Conference, Universität des Saarlandes, Saarbrücken, 29/05-01/06/2014.

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