This study provides an in-depth understanding of the structural and contextual factors that foster or hinder the educational pathways and employment opportunities of young refugees and asylum-seekers in Catalonia (Spain), and how their expectations and aspirations vary and change before and after forced migration. The authors implemented a multimodal ethnographic methodology that explore, the potential of photography, to analyze how these young people, belonging to differentiated social locations – class, ethnicity, status, gender, and/or sexual orientation – have been exposed to similar systems of oppression. These systems function at their mutual intersection within a general matrix of domination. The vulnerability of asylum-seeker status is the main obstacle to social integration. However, these young people stand out for their great capacity for resilience and a strong desire to advance in education as a proactive response that helps them resist new “structural and contextual oppression” in the host society. © 2023 by Emerald Publishing Limited.

DOI: 10.1108/S1479-367920230000045012
ISSN: 14793679