An essay about how thousands of refugees seeking safety, and others seeking prosperity attempting to reach the so-called developed world, published in Al Manakh 1, a special publication by the periodical Volume, that offers a detailed analysis of the history, culture and architecture of the following breeding-ground of modernization.
More than 35,000 African immigrants have reached the coasts of the Canary Islands clandestinely in the year 2006. In parallel and in the same space, more than 10 million tourists a year spend their holidays. These paradoxical situations, where tourism and immigration converge in one place, that is to say, the beach, is a characteristic and at the same time an ambivalence of over modernity.
In the holiday areas of the Canaries, tourists, immigrants who have arrived in precarious craft, autochthonous workers and already legalized immigrants coincide simultaneously. Their beaches incessantly become true public spaces, if we accept that “public spaces are places where strangers coincide”, as defined by Zygmunt Bauman. In these circumstances, the solidarity with the immigrant becomes evident. However, tourism entrepreneurs, politicians, some tourists and, lastly, the citizens of the Canaries see the arrival of these immigrants on “their” beaches as something worrying.