Public PhD Defense of Alina Penkala, UNU-CRIS PhD Fellow

23 April 2024

On Thursday, 23 April 2024 at 10.00, the public PhD Defense of Alina Penkala on Rebuilding home and identities: Ukrainian mothers navigating war, migration and return will take place at the Campus Aula, Volderstraat 9, 9000 Ghent.


This dissertation explores the experiences of migration, return, and the negotiation of belonging among Ukrainian women, set against the backdrop of Ukraine's socio-political transformations and recent geopolitical upheavals. It delves into the lived experiences of Ukrainian mothers who migrated and later returned to Ukraine, as well as those displaced by Russia's invasion of Ukraine, to understand the complex dynamics of return migration and belonging negotiation. Employing a blend of Grounded Theory, biographical interview methods and discourse analysis, the research examines the impact of stigmatizing state narratives on returning women's identities, their negotiations of belonging within their communities, and the broader discourses of gender, motherhood, and nationhood.

Please confirm your attendance before April 16, 2024 via