This thorough analysis of immigration governance in Spain explores the dynamics of inclusion and exclusion at play at one of Europe’s southern borders. David Moffette analyzes Spain’s processes of immigration governance and reveals the complicated series of legal obstacles facing many migrants.
Differential access to border mobility is a central concern of contemporary politics, and nowhere is this more apparent than in the European Union, where external borders have been strengthened to prevent irregular entry and internal borders have been removed to promote free circulation. Since 2000, Spain has seen the arrival of thousands of migrants, many of whom face precarious immigration status. Moffette draws on interviews with policymakers and on more than three decades of parliamentary debates, laws, and policy documents to analyze Spain’s policies. He shows that culture, labour, and security issues intersect to create a regime of migration governance that is at once progressive and repressive, characterized by programs of mass regularization of migrants living in the country without authorization, but restrictive immigration policies and tight border control. A detailed empirical analysis of Spanish immigration policy, this book provides a thought-provoking and insightful contribution to debates in socio-legal, border, and citizenship studies. This book will be of interest to scholars in socio-legal studies, sociology of law, and sociology, as well as those with an interest in migration, race, policing, and border security.
David Moffette is a sociologist who studies various questions related to the intersections between criminal law and immigration law, the securitization of immigration, borders and bordering practices, state multiculturalism, and race and racism. His main current research, titled "Municipal Immigration Control? Overlapping Jurisdictions, National Projects and Borderwork in Montreal and Barcelona," studies how institutional actors whose work is not primary concerned with immigration regulation can use municipal bylaws to govern immigration. By doing so, they intervene in the city but on a space imagined as national. The project thus looks at laws and regulations not primarily as systems of rules, but as a flexible set of tactics and techniques deployed in the everyday governance of urban life. This research focuses on local politics in order to better understand the multi-scalar dimension of immigration governance, and promote policy changes that can help better protect the rights of immigrants with precarious status.