'British?' The Discursive Construction of Collective Identities amongst British Expatriates in Contemporary Finland

Research output: ThesisMaster's thesis


In the final decade of the twentieth century the term ‘identity’ achieved ubiquity in the social sciences. Alongside this, it has become somewhat of a buzzword in wider society today. The literature review chapter of this thesis seeks to place the following research within the sociological discussion of ‘identity’. In this thesis I propose to discuss the collective (national, state, and supranational) identifications of British expatriates in contemporary Finland with reference to the following research question: How do British expatriates construct their collective identities in discourse? The ‘ethnographic discourse analysis’ that I have employed in this study seeks combine the ethnographic study of British expatriates in contemporary Finland with a discursive analysis of my data collected. The ethnographic fieldwork conducted does not follow a traditional style: rather than collecting data from various sources and compiling it together for analysis, I recognize the contribution of my own expatriate experiences and some eighteen months plus of participant observations to the qualitative interviews conducted, which comprise the corpus of my data. In total over ten hours of digital audio recordings were made, transcribed and analyzed herein. The following discursive analysis focuses upon the language and means employed by those interviewed to construct their various collective identifications. It explores the complex relationships between these discursive identity constructions and seeks to explain their subjective importance.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 2008
MoE publication typeG2 Master's thesis, polytechnic Master's thesis

Note regarding dissertation

Thesis grade: Eximia cum laude appprobatur

Fields of Science

  • 5141 Sociology
  • Collective Identities
  • Englishness
  • Welshness
  • Britishness
  • Europeanness
  • Discourse Analysis
  • Ethnographic Fieldwork
  • Qualitative Interviewing

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