Mobility/FixityRethinking Binaries in Mobility Studies

Type Article
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)6-21
JournalMobility Humanities
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 31 Jan 2023
Permanent link
Show download statistics
View graph of relations
Citation formats


In this paper I outline some of the different conceptual approaches to mobility and immobility/fixity that have emerged in mobility studies over the past few decades, connecting this work to broader philosophical and methodological debates in the humanities and social sciences. I discuss writings which have distinguished between mobility and moorings, mobility and motility, and nomadic and sedentary metaphysics, before focussing upon studies which either approach mobility-fixity as a continuum, or highlight the many qualities, events and experiences which traverse or cut across this binary. In the final section I outline Gilles Deleuze and Félix Guattari’s theoretical approach to movement, affect and becoming in which they distinguish between molar and molecular becomings and movements. By adopting a processual and non-representational approach to mobility and stasis I argue that the problem is not one of understanding when and why things move or are still, but of tracing when and how movements become perceptible and imperceptible.