This article draws attention to life as an ‘internal stranger’ in the city, the nation and other spatial formations. It explores the habitability of the different spatial formations and the possibilities of identification for ethnic minority groups. Drawing on research on citizens in Copenhagen of Pakistani origin, the study employs theoretical ideas of estrangement, identification and recognition in order to obtain a thorough understanding of the complexity and the contradictory character of their spatial identities and affiliations. A turning point in the double processes of estrangement and identification is ambivalence in affiliation to the Danish nation expressing the discrepancy between feeling Danish and not being recognized as a full member of the Danish imagined community. This emotional ambivalence gives rise to what we call jumping scale in identification and a search for alternative spaces of identity.