What is Maldusa

Once upon a time, somewhere in the middle of the Mediterranean Sea, there was a boat that had departed from Libya, making its way North. After several hours at sea, the people on the boat had lost their orientation and decided to phone Watch the Med - Alarm Phone to ask for support in their journey. The person who picked up the phone asked the people on board where they were traveling to, what was their destination. The person on the boat answered that they were directed towards 'Maldusa'. Confused, the Alarm Phone member asked once more whether they wished to reach Malta, or Lampedusa. "Maldusa, Maldusa! We are going to Maldusa!" repeated the person on the boat, this time very clearly and full of enthusiasm.

Maldusa: an imaginary nowhere and anywhere land in the Mediterranean Sea, an imagined destination of hope and freedom, a space that, every day, we try to build and to make real through our struggles, hand in hand with people on the move.

Maldusa is a cultural association aimed at facilitating freedom of movement, supporting existing infrastructures for migrant solidarity, as well as researching and documenting border violence, on land and at sea, on the Mediterranean routes.

The association is composed of activists involved in Search and Rescue, migrant solidarity and transnational struggles. Maldusa follows a horizontal and collaborative approach. It seeks to bring together various experiences and expertise to build bridges and collaborations between the North and South of the Mediterranean Sea, as well as between European and African realities, people on the move and with a migratory experience. Whilst documenting and denouncing the continuum of border violence, Maldusa's research seeks to contextualise it within a broader and more nuanced imaginary/scenario: on the one hand challenging the narrative of "emergency", on the other working towards the construction of collective webs and networks of grassroots resistance all along migratory routes.

Maldusa wants to deconstruct the image of the Mediterranean Sea merely as a deadly space, as a space of violence, pushbacks, non-assistance and selective visibility, in order to foreground the complexity of imaginaries and practices related to solidarity, mutual aid and resistance. Connecting apparently isolated events and understanding borders as contested spaces/relations, Maldusa places attention to processes, struggles and histories of places, actors and communities that converge at the border. This way, Maldusa wants to strengthen solidarity structures on the routes, and to support people on the move on land and at sea.