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'It is English and there is no Alternative': Intersectionality, Language and Social/Organizational Differentiation of Polish Migrants in the UK

Johansson, M and Śliwa, M (2016) ''It is English and there is no Alternative': Intersectionality, Language and Social/Organizational Differentiation of Polish Migrants in the UK.' Gender, Work and Organization, 23 (3). 296 - 309. ISSN 0968-6673

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Abstract

© 2016 John Wiley & Sons Ltd. In this paper, we employ an intersectional approach to explore language as a process of social and organizational differentiation of Polish migrant workers in the UK. In addition to intersectionality, our conceptual framework is informed by a sociolinguistic perspective on globalization, which accounts for the social differentiation produced by language in transnational contexts. Empirically, the paper is based on a qualitative study employing life history interviews. Our findings show that for a migrant worker, the ability to negotiate access to employment and other key institutional settings depends to a large extent on her or his linguistic abilities. However, as we demonstrate, it is necessary to account for the intersections of language and other processes such as gender, class and nationality to understand how the social and organizational positions as experienced by the participants are shaped by broader processes and practices of differentiation. Our study contributes to the extant literature on intersectionality by specifically considering the intersection of language with other categories, and by relating intersectionality to contemporary debates on migration.

Item Type: Article
Subjects: H Social Sciences > H Social Sciences (General)
H Social Sciences > HD Industries. Land use. Labor > HD28 Management. Industrial Management
J Political Science > JV Colonies and colonization. Emigration and immigration. International migration
P Language and Literature > PG Slavic, Baltic, Albanian languages and literature
Divisions: Faculty of Social Sciences > Essex Business School > Centre for Work, Organisation and Society
Depositing User: Marjana Johansson
Date Deposited: 28 Oct 2014 11:28
Last Modified: 05 Sep 2017 01:15
URI: http://repository.essex.ac.uk/id/eprint/10805

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