Poetics of Expulsion in UK Narratives of the New Galician Diaspora

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Since 2008, thousands of young Galician graduates have left their country looking for the job opportunities they cannot find at home, with the UK (particularly London) as their main destination. A noticeable feature of this movement is the increase of women migrants, who have sometimes occupied unskilled, low-paid jobs despite their university qualifications. Starting in the second decade of the 21st century, a corpus of narrative texts written by Galician women authors (Alba Lago, Anna R. Figueiredo, María Alonso, and Eva Moreda) has given visibility to these experiences. Lago’s, Figueiredo’s, and Alonso’s characters express anger and frustration as a way of denouncing the precariousness of their situation and the material conditions that led to their departure from Galicia. Combining different theoretical approaches from migration studies (Morokvasic; Nail; Kedra), criticism of global neoliberalism (Bourdieu; Bauman; Sassen), and affect theory (Ahmed), I propose an analytical framework for reading these texts as expression of a “poetics of expulsion” with four thematic axes: expulsion, exploitation, (dis)connection, and repossession. I finish by considering Moreda’s novel as illustrative of a different view of migration, focusing on the migrant’s agency and on migration as a personal choice (Silvey and Lawson).


  • new Galician diaspora, United Kingdom, migration, gender, narrative, expulsion, economic crisis
Original languageEnglish
Article number37
Number of pages18
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 3 Mar 2022

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