Remasculinization and Mobilities in a Reindustrializing Community in Northern Norway

Citation:

Valestrand, Halldis. 2018. "Remasculinization and Mobilities in a Reindustrializing Community in Northern Norway." Gender, Place & Culture 25 (8): 1121-37.

Author: Halldis Valestrand

Abstract:

In this article I explore how certain aspects of mobility, especially commuting, became predominant in the construction of a dominant ‘place-story’ in a municipality in Northern Norway (Nord-Norge), and claim that this stepped up a remasculinization process in the community. This former male-dominated mining community had undergone an extensive economic and social restructuration process since the 1990s, which had resulted in a much more varied job market, but equally importantly a strengthened situation for women, occasionally phrased as a feminization of the municipality. From 2009, a reindustrialization process mainly based on natural resources was underway, but according to private business interests, its further growth and development was dependent on attracting skilled labour, which was a new situation in a region that had struggled to keep its inhabitant numbers. A place-story was emerging in which increased work-related commuting evidently disturbed the local conception of this community as a stable place. By looking closer at the background to how this story came about, and the circumstances in which it was constructed, I focus on both a controversial commuting issue and other work-related mobilities that did not seem to cause the same attention. My conclusion is that the commuter issue reinforced a remasculinization process in the community.

Keywords: reindustrialization, remasculinization, mining town, place-stories, work-related mobilities

Topics: Development, Economies, Extractive Industries, Gender, Masculinity/ies, Infrastructure, Transportation, Livelihoods Regions: Europe, Nordic states, Northern Europe Countries: Norway

Year: 2018

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