Time and Friendship in the Corona Pandemic: Relationship-Making Between Middle-Class Migrant Women in Norway
Peer reviewed, Journal article
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OriginalversjonStudia Migracyjne - Przegląd Polonijny. 2021, 3 (181), 211-236. 10.4467/25444972SMPP.21.040.14460
The pandemic’s rupture in people’s lives was felt in a particular way among foreign-born middle-class women in Trondheim. In the situation of unexpected (im)mobility and anxieties related to the pandemic, the lack of close relationships in the local context, was significantly felt. Despite digital acceleration, that was witnessed with pandemic, it highlighted the centrality of local presence and physicality of relations. The pandemic created a situation in which women realised the importance of having friends in the local community to cope with the restrictions and triggered a necessity for the otherwise highly mobile individuals to establish new relationships and explore the local environment. In this article, I discuss the formation of such relationships and the role of social media platforms, more specifically the role of a local social media-based initiative for mobile women with diverse cultural backgrounds. I argue that ‘affective time’ of pandemic created temporalities for forming a community for sharing sufferings, security, and joyful distractions from the crisis. This article considers meaning and experiences of friendship under condition of uncertainty and how relationship-making shape migrant’s woman engagement with the present. I follow a methodology of friendship, developed by Tillmann-Healy (2003), as a useful tool to research friendship-making practices and specifically in times of crisis.