Between physical and mental borders Tracing back the borderising migration trajectories and processes from Barcelona to Ceuta and Melilla

Thumbnail Image
Issue Date
Journal Title
Journal ISSN
Volume Title
Spain has a long history with migration. While its image as immigration country might be rather new, migrants have already been arriving for decades on its soil. It forms one of the main gates to Europe. The enclaves of Ceuta and Melilla physically border the so-called Global South, being located on the African continent. This particularity, along with ambiguous and vivid geopolitics, creates two very paradoxical places. Barcelona is a metaphorical ‘gate to Europe’. Its cognitively constructed image shows a Europe of possibilities. However, before getting there, as well as before being able to start such a new chapter, migrants encounter many borders. The ultimate physical borders that separate two tiny pieces of Europe within Africa play a gigantic role and demonstrate the so-called ‘border spectacle’. The migration process, however, is far longer, and involves administrative, mental and social borderising dynamics of different kinds, which create exclusion and immobility. Irregularity leads to only more irregularity. To create an atmosphere where one feels at home and included, a change in conceptual thinking is a requirement.
Faculteit der Managementwetenschappen