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Query : institute/department: "Associated members" (date: 2003)

AuthorK. Horsti
TitleGlobal mobility and the media: Presenting asylum seekers as a threat
JournalNordicom Review
Institute/dept.Associated members
KeywordsIllegal/irregular migration; Public opinion/media; Cultural values; Discrimination/racism/exclusion; Diversity/pluralism/multiculturalism; Identity; Policies local/national/international
AbstractAsylum seeking has become a major immigration related theme in the European media. This paper examines the media coverage of Slovakian Roma asylum seekers in 1999 in Finland with discourse and frame analysis. It suggests that the entrance of a thousand asylum seekers was framed as a threat to welfare state and liberal democratic principles. Common European metaphors of 'flood' and 'flow' were used to construct an unexpected chaos. As politics has become more medialized, the media's role in contemporary politics has gained more importance. Media representation reflects and constructs politics. The paper concludes that the coverage supports construction of new control policies by legitimizing restriction of access to asylum procedure and by introducing tightened policies as the only solution to problems of immigration. Moreover, presenting asylum seekers as 'non-persons' contributes to their illegitimization. The media are a sphere where the tension between control discourse and human rights values is negotiated.
Document typeArticle
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