Title: Waiting for a future in Lisbon: borders, migrations and biographies

Authors: José Mapril

Addresses: Centro em Rede de Antropologia (CRIA), Av. Forças Armadas, Edifício ISCTE-IUL, sala 2W2, 1649-026 Lisboa, Portugal; NOVA FCSH, Avenida Berna 26 C, 1069-061 Lisboa, Portugal

Abstract: Based on a long-term research among Bangladeshis in Lisbon, this article ethnographically explores the perspectives and experiences of my interlocutors about waiting for documents and regularisation in Portugal and how this waiting is frequently perceived as a radical uncertainty about one's own future. As my interlocutors emphasise it creates a feeling of being stuck, of going nowhere, of being tested. These experiences of waiting, and its corresponding dilemmas and anxieties, have to be interpreted in relation to the governmentalities of migrations and its relations with the spatialisation effect of states, namely, the displacement of border making processes through which states continuously produce sovereignty. Such bordering dynamics, this article argues, produce a certain kind of experience that can be interpreted through the concept of border biographies.

Keywords: migrations; borders; waiting; experience; biographies; Portugal; Bangladeshi migration.

DOI: 10.1504/IJMBS.2019.105808

International Journal of Migration and Border Studies, 2019 Vol.5 No.4, pp.324 - 338

Received: 14 Dec 2018
Accepted: 26 Aug 2019

Published online: 03 Mar 2020 *

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