Barcelona Photoblog: Romanians in Barcelona: Finding People Behind Stereotypes

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Romanians in Barcelona: Finding People Behind Stereotypes

Romanian woman and her son, Barcelona [enlarge]

Behind every immigrant there is a story and not precisely that of a successful individual that found a good job, started a family and managed to be a respected citizen with access to all civil rights. There are immigrants that 'integrate' themselves (awful term to refer to 'you should not bite the hand that feeds you' or 'when in Rome do as the Romans do') and there are others who 'choose' not to do so (or better said, they will never be accepted by 'respectful' citizens, either local or ex-immigrant). Of course, this a delicate topic and there is gray in between black and white. Standing on the 'wrong' sidewalk, whether it was your choice (hard to believe), because you lost the last train, entered a bad streak of luck or simply were born on the other side, will entitle you to receive great doses of rejection and a journey to limbo, the realm of absolute oblivion. And being on the dark side means you will stop believing in man's justice, in fairness, in humanity, in the love of others, in rules not because you chose to but because they sent you there. And why do I say all this, well because there are stereotypes in our society for all that looks different and does not 'integrate' and no country is safe except the 'pure respectful citizens' (not quite clear who belongs and who doesn't yet). There are Latin, Black, Chinese, Moorish, Pakistani, Eastern Europe people and they are all very well classified in our rotten minds in a scale of preference. Nobody talks about the person behind the stereotype, they are rarely given the opportunity to 'adapt themselves' and are treated differently, with a biased criteria. The moment we stop categorizing individuals we will be much better people, or should I say, persons. The image today, a Romanian woman and her child. And this is a link to other Romanians living in Barcelona. What are you going to do, misjudge them or try to find people behind the sterotype?


  1. Anonymous1:02 AM

    A deep bow in respect of this entry of yours !

    Streets over here are filled with 'colourful spots', mostly young women with their children, as well; yet am not sure of their origin, most people say they are from Romania though.

    Many times holding young kids, barely old enough to walk, other times breastfeeding them still, while holding a hand for money open ... for sure heart breaking; demanding an honest and soon reply from those responsable of a city. Before writing a book, once again many thanks for this. Please have a good Sunday.

    daily athens

  2. What a great post you have here. I think we all have this issue in their country. All I will say is, kindness matters. Beautiful photo.

  3. Hi,

    I'm from Romania, and watch your blog for about a year (I discovered after a second visit in Barcelona). On each visit I seen such people, and I want to specify that they are not Romanian - are gypsies ("tigani") in Romania (or "Romi" = homeless people who usually live in tents and wandered around the country dealing with the theft and begging) . Even if the name "Romi" is like the Romanian, many of whom live in neighboring countries, and lately have invaded Europe, make us ashamed, because of this similarity of names. Of course not only deals with the theft of all, there are different groups that make old crafts (making cast iron cookware or copper, or playing music at parties in the countryside.
    I apologize for any mistakes in translation, in the name of google;), and I congratulate you for your blog.

  4. -Thanks so much for the flattering words Robert!
    -Nicolae, I really, really appreciate you explain in detail what reality is like in Romania, who is who, and help us deal with stereotypes about your country. That is why I included the link to the expat blog in hope that my visitors can see we shouldn't go around classifying and misjudging people, not to say a whole country. Thanks so much, and my sincere apologies if I had to use the word Romanians to illustrate the wrong concepts in my country.

  5. What a great shot.


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