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Rebordering Britain & Britons after Brexit

Throwntogetherness in the context of Brexit: Diverse community spaces in the East End of Glasgow


The 2016 UK’s vote to leave the European Union (i.e. Brexit) has evoked a sense of insecurity and non-belonging among EU citizens and other migrant and minoritised ethnic communities in British cities. Against this backdrop, little is known about how migrant and established populations produce inclusive community spaces, in particular in areas with a history of deprivation. In response, this article explores how Polish migrants and the long-settled residents ‘come together’ in the East End of Glasgow, a rapidly changing area with a history of poverty and multiple inequalities, to work on community food projects and create inclusive spaces of throwntogetherness. Methodologically, the article draws upon 40 interviews with the long-settled residents and more recent Polish migrants in the area, 10 interviews with representatives of community organisations and associated fieldwork (e.g. occasional participant observation). The article finds that in ‘throwing together’ diverse local populations, the East End food spaces are conducive to positive encounter against the backdrop of a wider hostile environment. By conceptually engaging with the Masseyan notion of throwntogetherness, the article re-thinks those spaces as continuously becoming and overcoming difference. © 2022 The Author(s). Published by Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group.

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Anna Gawlewicz (United Kingdom)

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