Leaving Spain

A Biographical Study of an Economic Crisis and New Beginnings

Me-Linh Hannah Riemann

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Life histories and experiences of Spanish migrants

Since the beginning of the economic crisis of 2008, Spain, like other Southern European countries, has witnessed a mass departure of mostly young people looking for opportunities abroad. Leaving Spain is based on 58 autobiographical narrative interviews with recent Spanish migrants who went to the UK and Germany, and sometimes returned. By presenting a combination of in-depth case studies and comparative analyses, the author demonstrates the potential of biographical research and narrative analysis in studying contemporary Europe, including its overlapping crises. The scope of the sociological study is not limited to examining how those who left Spain experienced single phases of their migration. Instead, it focuses on the significance of migration projects in the context of their life histories and how they make sense of these experiences in retrospect.

This book will not only be of great interest to social scientists and students in different disciplines and interdisciplinary studies such as sociology, anthropology, human geography, European studies, education, and social work, but also to professionals, European and national policy makers, and those interested in learning more about migrants’ experiences, perspectives, and (often invisible) contributions.

Ebook available in Open Access.
This publication is GPRC-labeled (Guaranteed Peer-Reviewed Content).

Format: Monograph - free ebook - ePUB

300 pages

ISBN: 9789461664501

Publication: June 01, 2022

Languages: English

Mê-Linh Riemann is a post-doctoral researcher at the Centre for Sociological Research at KU Leuven. She previously completed her doctoral research at the University of Cambridge.
Leaving Spain fills in a huge blank in the knowledge we have of the phenomenon under study and is very valuable for the originality of its research project's design as well as for the rigor of its analyses. The case studies are wonderfully human, the analysis is mostly formulated in accessible language, the writing is clear and convincing.
Daniel Bertaux

In a debated field such as migration, the work of Mê-Linh Hannah Riemann is very important in showing which conditions can actually lead to the migration of young middle-class educated people, the conditions they find upon arrival, how they find work, learn the local language, associate with others, eventually decide to return or continue on abroad.
Lena Inowlocki, Goethe-Universität Frankfurt am Main