Mobility as a Strategy to Cope with Change: A Case Study of the Village of Wronka
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Poland’s accession to the EU exponentially increased the mobility of its citizens and changed the geography of Polish migration to Western Europe. Poles go abroad to improve their livelihoods: to work, earn competitive wages, and to study. Post-accession migrants hail mainly from small communities. The paper is based on empirical research in a small community of Wronka in the West Pomeranian Voivodship. The goal of this case study was to reconstruct the history of labour mobility of Wronka’s residents, identify migration paths of their families, and analyse the effects of labour migration on the sending community. Departing from the customary analytical lens, this study analyses Polish mobility from the point of view of the sending, not the destination community. In the context of Wronka, mobility has become the norm in this previously immobile community centred around the state-owned farm, and appears to be a strategy used to cope with social, economic, and political change.
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