Migrating myths. Discursive processes in Russian autobiographical migration accounts

  • Klingseis, Katharina (PI - Project head)

    Project Details


    Twenty autobiographical narratives recounted by Russian women migrants living in Vienna serve as the empirical basis of a study on discursive processes under the conditions of migration. The migration accounts are collected in narrative interviews, covering the migration experience of women of various ages and social backgrounds and with various emigration motives from the early 1970s to the present, including the new forms of migration of artists and business people shuttling between Russia and Austria that developed in the course of the 1990s.

    A major goal of the present project is to take a discourse analytical perspective on the phenomenon of migration, focusing on the cultural/ideological implications of migration and its consequences for subjectivity.

    The focus of interest in the present project will be the traces of discourse, i.e. the socially shared ‘narratives’ and ‘myths’ by which the migration experience is represented in the accounts, the metaphors by which the traversing of socio-geographical space and autobiographically relevant places are depicted, the arguments by which women’s decisions for certain ways of action are explained and/or legitimized – briefly, discourse elements reproduced and/or transformed by the interviewees.

    The ‘narratives’ and ‘myths’ identified in the Russian women’s accounts will be studied and interpreted in their Soviet, Russian and Austrian interdiscursive relations. Special attention will be paid to conflictive situations depicted in the accounts, as they point to crises of subjectivity and discursive struggle.

    Financing body

    Austrian Science Fund
    Effective start/end date1/11/0230/04/04

    Austrian Classification of Fields of Science and Technology (OEFOS)

    • 602047 Slavonic studies
    • 602048 Sociolinguistics