EAUH Conference 2018


Session M11. Beyond City Gates: Spaces of Arrival and Transit for Migrants in European Cities, 1500-2000

Coordinators: Markian Prokopovych (, Rosa Salzberg (

European cities have always been places of arrival and transit for migrants coming from both near and far, with a diverse range of motives. These movements shape the urban environment and are in turn shaped by it; the movement of people necessitating an infrastructure of more or less permanent spaces to receive and accommodate them, to facilitate their permanence or encourage their departure. These spaces might be quite different in nature as well as appearance, they might be on the peripheries of the city or absolutely central; officially designated and constructed or created in a more ad hoc manner by locals or migrants themselves. They all, however, played a crucial role in migrants' journeys as points of encounter with local authorities and the urban community, places to access information, sociability and resources, facilitating paths towards integration or marginalisation.

Looking at and beyond city gates and their modern equivalents, this panel aims to analyse urban spaces of arrival and transit around transport nodes and accommodation sites to understand their role in the itineraries and experiences of migrants in European cities from the early modern period to the twentieth century. We encourage the submission of abstracts for papers examining sites such as city gates, ferry stations, train stations, ports, airports, inns, hostels, lodging houses, reception centres, and considering their political, social, cultural, economic and/or architectural significance.
Keywords: migration; early modern; modern history; transience; spaces of arrival; architecture; politics; culture; social and economic history