A new book: Migrant Friendships in a Super-Diverse City

ibidem-Verlag published my book titled Migrant Friendships in a Super-Diverse City: Russian-Speakers and their Social Relationships in London in the 21st Century in October 2015.


This timely book offers an integrative and critical approach to the conceptualization of diversity of social ties in contemporary urban migrant populations. It explores the informal relationships of migrants in London and how the construction and the dynamics of their social ties function as a part of urban sociality within the super-diversity of London.Based on the results of a qualitative study of Russian-speaking migrants, it targets the four main themes of transnationalism, ethnicity, cosmopolitanization, and friendship. Acknowledging the complexity of the ways in which contemporary migrants rely on social relationships, the author argues that this complexity cannot be fully grasped by theories of transnationalism or explanations of ethnic communities alone. Instead, one can gather a closer understanding of migrant sociality when adding the analysis of informal relationships in different locations and with different subjects. This book suggests that friendship should be seen as an important concept for all research on migrant social connections.


Foreword by Claire Dwyer
Chapter 1. Limits of transnationalism 
London: a super-diverse city
Russian-speaking migrants in London
Transnationalism: introducing a popular concept in migration studies
Who is a transmigrant?
Critique of transnationalism
Chapter 2. Ethnicity and social relationships 
Ethnicity and migration
Social relationships amongst migrants
The nature of friendship
(post) Soviet friendship
Chapter 3. Localising friends    
‘It just happens’
Looking for Russian-speakers
Expanding networks
Transnational friendships?
Chapter 4. Choosing friends  
Degrees of closeness
Constructing distances among Russian-speakers in the bar
Divisions within the community
Affective distancing
Chapter 5. Rethinking friends    
Becoming cosmopolitan
Everyday diversity
Dynamics of change
Social contexts of cosmopolitanisation
‘Us’ and ‘Them’: questioning the dichotomy
Ambiguous images of ‘otherness’


“Drawing on a range of innovative research methods, Migrant Friendships in a Super-Diverse City presents an original and empirically compelling picture of the Russian-speaking diaspora in London. This book is a must for European migration scholars.” — Alan Latham, University College London

You can buy the book from the publisher, Columbia University Press website, on Amazon (UK/US/Germany/France/Canada) or other vendors.


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