Private empowerment and public isolation: power in the stories of migrant ‘Mother-Poles’

Paulina Pustułka , Agnieszka Trąbka


While the lives of migrant women are predominantly portrayed as inherently problematic, limited attention has been given to their experiences of empowerment and disempowerment. The maternal power framework is used in this article to study Polish migrant mothers and their children. Bringing together two studies to showcase an intergenerational perspective of the realms of migrant motherhood, the authors present evidence from (1) the stories of women representing a ‘Mother-Pole’ parenting (an iconically Polish self-sacrificing practice of subjecting women’s needs to those of her family), and (2) the data collected through interviewing adult children of Polish migrant mothers. The findings indicate a twofold conceptualization of power, challenging the universal ascription of ‘powerlessness’ characteristic to motherhood, yet contending that Mother-Poles are prone to marginalization. Ultimately, the article comments on the possibility of transformative maternal power among the Poles abroad and contributes to the current debates on the intersection of gender, ethnicity and power.
Author Paulina Pustułka (Wydział Nauk Humanistycznych i Społecznych)
Paulina Pustułka,,
- Wydział Nauk Humanistycznych i Społecznych
, Agnieszka Trąbka
Agnieszka Trąbka,,
Journal seriesIdentities: Global Studies in Culture and Power, ISSN 1070-289X, e-ISSN 1547-3384, (A 30 pkt)
Issue year2018
Publication size in sheets0.9
Keywords in EnglishPower, motherhood, migration, Poland, identities
ASJC Classification1201 Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous); 3314 Anthropology; 3316 Cultural Studies
Languageen angielski
P. Pustulka Private empowerment and public isolation power in the stories of migrant Mother-Poles ART.pdf 511.41 KB
P. Pustulka Private empowerment and public isolation power in the stories of migrant Mother-Poles oswiadczenie.pdf 381.73 KB
Score (nominal)30
Score sourcejournalList
Publication indicators Scopus SNIP (Source Normalised Impact per Paper): 2017 = 1.158; WoS Impact Factor: 2017 = 0.92 (2) - 2017=1.208 (5)
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