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Governing Irregular Migration: Bordering Culture, Labour, and Security in Spain.


Governing Irregular Migration: Bordering Culture, Labour, and Security in Spain

David Moffette

University of British Columbia Press


220 pages



Law and Society Series


Examining how irregular migration became a problem in Spain, this book explores Spanish immigration governance to understand security practices at the Mediterranean borders, the role of immigrants, and the relationship between precarious work and precarious immigration status. It contends that three sets of logics and practices inform the problematization of irregular migration in Spain since the 1980s: culturalization tied to the history of Spanish colonialism and the governing of migrants as cultural subjects; laboralization that attempts to control labor migration flows and frame irregular migrants as workers who contribute to the national labor market; and securitization focused on the defense of territorial sovereignty, blocking all migration routes available to irregular migrants and framing migrants as potential threats. It shows how these practices work together for migration and immigration governance in Spain through probation resulting from the rescaling of bordering practices across space and time, the deployment of a space of legally produced liminality for irregular migrants, and the use of conditionality and discretion in the assessment of desirability. It describes the emergence of irregular migration as an object of governmental intervention in the 1980s when Spain adopted the first Alien Act, and its precursors; the three sets of logics and practices that have informed its problematization since then; and forms the governance takes in conceptualizing immigration probation. US distribution by U. of Washington Press; Canadian by U. of Toronto Press. ([umlaut] Ringgold, Inc., Portland, OR)

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Title Annotation:David Moffette
Article Type:Book review
Date:Feb 1, 2018
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