Residential histories of Munich's Turkish population : a biographical approach to urban residential mobility
This thesis examines the residential histories of Munich's Turkish population and evaluates the application of a biographical approach to the explanation of residential mobility. The analysis focuses on three different, but complementary, levels of analysis. The first examines the changing aggregate patterns of residential location and migration of Munich's Turkish population in the 1980s and 1990s. Secondly, the analysis turns from the crosssectional to the longitudinal and examines the residential histories of a cohort of 72 respondents. Thirdly, and moving further from the aggregate to the individual, the study explains residential histories by incorporating people's experiences, and evaluates the usefulness of a biographical explanation of residential mobility, based within a theoretical framework connecting identity and action. The research adopts a 'mixed methods' approach combining qualitative and quantitative methods to address the three levels of analysis effectively. Analysis of population and housing data from the census examines aggregate patterns of location and migration for Munich's Turks. The results of a questionnaire survey outline movement through space and through the housing market for one particular cohort. Finally, in-depth biographical interviews examine people's residential histories in more detail by incorporating their experiences, focusing both on primary immigrants and their children joining them in Germany later (secondary immigrants). The in-depth part of the study also provides the opportunity of outlining and evaluating a biographical approach to urban residential mobility. The research shows that, for both primary and secondary immigrants, residence has a significance that makes housing a crucial issue, important for feeling at home in Germany. Finding adequate places to live, however, has always been difficult for Munich's Turks as a result of their inferior position in the housing market. As a consequence, this population has undergone a marked sequence of movement through housing sectors, that has also resulted in processes of deconcentration and selective suburbanisation. These spatial patterns have not been the result of choice by the people concerned but are determined significantly by the structure and mechanisms of the housing market in Munich. At the level of migration theory, the research demonstrates that action (movement) and non-action (non-movement) are significantly located in people's biographies. Thereby, it is also shown that placing a biographical approach within a theoretical framework connecting action, narrative and identity is one way of addressing the demands of overcoming the structure/agency dualism, and contextualising migration and non-migration more fully.