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Strategic lifestyle management in later life: Swedish lifestyle movers in Malta seeking the 'best of both worlds'
Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Geography and Economic History.
2017 (English)In: Population, Space and Place, ISSN 1544-8444, E-ISSN 1544-8452, Vol. 23, no 1, e1964Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

In affluent societies, an active choice of lifestyle is increasingly becoming an option. With increased possibilities for mobility, opportunities to lead a good life can be accessed across global space. However, lifestyle management is largely directed and constrained by structural frameworks, and movers have to allocate resources and experience in order to manoeuvre structures and make optimal lifestyle choices. This paper explores how residential mobility may be used as a resource to gain access to opportunities. Based on thematic analysis of in-depth interviews, this is performed by exploring the experiences of Swedish lifestyle movers in Malta, in their tailoring of mobility practices that allow them to enjoy opportunities for the good life in both countries. The research questions that have guided this study are as follows: (a) What does the good life comprise? (b) How are structural frameworks surrounding opportunities for lifestyle management perceived by movers? and (c) In what ways do movers actively tailor their mobility practices to achieve the good life? The results show that movers are highly engaged in tailoring their access to opportunities through place fixity, such as permanent residency and social integration, and through routinised and timed mobility practices.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2017. Vol. 23, no 1, e1964
Keyword [en]
lifestyle mobilities, multiple dwelling, retirement mobility, lifestyle management, Swedes in Malta
National Category
Human Geography
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-82970DOI: 10.1002/psp.1964ISI: 000396379300003OAI: oai:DiVA.org:umu-82970DiVA: diva2:664230
Note

Originally published in thesis in manuscript form.

Available from: 2013-11-14 Created: 2013-11-14 Last updated: 2017-12-06Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. The Best of Both Worlds: Aspirations, Drivers and Practices of Swedish Lifestyle Movers in Malta
Open this publication in new window or tab >>The Best of Both Worlds: Aspirations, Drivers and Practices of Swedish Lifestyle Movers in Malta
2013 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

It has often been claimed that contemporary societies are shaped by globalization; the rapid interconnections of societies, economies, markets, flows and information potentially linking all places in the world to each other. In search for experiences, variation, escape or comfort, individuals are travelling, circulating, and migrating between places, challenging the notions of ‘home’ and ‘away’, ‘everyday’ and ‘extraordinary’. This thesis addresses the ways lifestyle-led mobilities are produced and performed, by studying the mobility trajectories and experiences of Swedes dividing their time seasonally between Sweden and Malta. It explores how movers are faced with a structural framework that both facilitates and directs their choices concerning mobility, and how they interpret and respond to these structures. It also explores the imaginaries, meanings, and feelings for place, identity, and lifestyle that the movers negotiate through their mobility practices and through the links they create and sustain in places. Thus, this thesis is situated in an evolving field of research on lifestyle mobilities. Lifestyle mobilities are here defined as those mobility practices undertaken by individuals based on their freedom of choice, of a temporal or more permanent duration, with or without any significant ‘home base(s)’, that are primarily driven by aspirations to increase ‘quality of life’, and that are primarily related to the individuals’ lifestyle values.

The thesis is based on four individual papers exploring different aspects lifestyle mobility. The aim is to understand how production and performance aspects of lifestyle mobilities are related, and how notions of identity and belonging are negotiated in relation to lifestyle mobility practices. The production aspect relates to those structures and frameworks that create, facilitate, or sometimes delimit opportunities for lifestyle mobility while the performance aspect focuses on individual agency and meaning of lifestyle mobility practices. The studies are based on in-depth interviews with Swedish movers in Malta, and focus on how structural frameworks and mediations influence the ways that movers manoeuvre, manipulate or adapt to structures and influences in order to arrange their life context to achieve ‘quality of life’. A second aim focuses on the ways that movers reflect upon their identities and belongings as they travel routinely between two (or more) significant places, and how this may influence mobility practices. It is concluded that structures and mediations are both facilitating and delimiting movers’ space of choice regarding mobility decisions. Through their agency, movers negotiate their space of choice by allocating resources and experience, accessing supportive networks and tailoring their access to entitlements. The production and performance aspects of lifestyle mobility practices are interlinked in complex ways.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Umeå: Umeå universitet, 2013. 69 p.
Series
GERUM, ISSN 1402-5205 ; 2013:2
Keyword
lifestyle mobilities, multiple dwelling, lifestyle management, transnationalism, place imaginaries, identity and belonging
National Category
Human Geography
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-82972 (URN)978-91-7459-766-0 (ISBN)
Public defence
2013-12-06, KB 3B1, KBC-Huset, Umeå Universitet, Umeå, 13:15 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Available from: 2013-11-15 Created: 2013-11-14 Last updated: 2013-11-29Bibliographically approved

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