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Security threat or a fellow human being? - a critical discourse analysis of the asylum debate in the Australian parliament

Håkansson Lindh, Moa LU (2015) UTVK03 20151
Sociology
Abstract
The world is currently experiencing a refugee movement of enormous scale with a necessity for assistance beyond comprehension. Simultaneously western states are becoming reluctant to host asylum seekers which have resulted in countries adopting restrictive asylum policies. In Australia the asylum seeker is framed as a security threat and a border control issue culminating in policies which serve the purpose to discourage asylum seekers from arriving. The development has been contested by civil society organization and advocates for human rights issues. This thesis investigates the political discourse on asylum to explore the growing resistance in Australia to accept asylum seekers. A critical discourse analysis is applied on speeches given... (More)
The world is currently experiencing a refugee movement of enormous scale with a necessity for assistance beyond comprehension. Simultaneously western states are becoming reluctant to host asylum seekers which have resulted in countries adopting restrictive asylum policies. In Australia the asylum seeker is framed as a security threat and a border control issue culminating in policies which serve the purpose to discourage asylum seekers from arriving. The development has been contested by civil society organization and advocates for human rights issues. This thesis investigates the political discourse on asylum to explore the growing resistance in Australia to accept asylum seekers. A critical discourse analysis is applied on speeches given in the Australian parliament debating asylum policy. The study operationalize Fairclough’s three-dimensional model to conduct a textual analysis and explore what coinciding discourses influence the political asylum discourse. The analysis is based on a theoretical triangulation including Foucault’s notions of the liberal rationalization of governmental practices, ideas on how symbolic power is utilized to represent the asylum seeker and finally Benhabib’s theory on political membership is applied to advocate a rightsbased discourse. The result of the analysis acknowledge two contesting discourses, the dominating discourse being securitization of Australian borders and an opposing discourse which defend a humane approach towards asylum seekers. (Less)
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author
Håkansson Lindh, Moa LU
supervisor
organization
course
UTVK03 20151
year
type
M2 - Bachelor Degree
subject
keywords
Australia, Asylum, Discourse, Human rights, Illegal, Power, Security-threat
language
English
id
5473702
date added to LUP
2015-06-26 08:57:23
date last changed
2015-06-26 08:57:23
@misc{5473702,
  abstract     = {The world is currently experiencing a refugee movement of enormous scale with a necessity for assistance beyond comprehension. Simultaneously western states are becoming reluctant to host asylum seekers which have resulted in countries adopting restrictive asylum policies. In Australia the asylum seeker is framed as a security threat and a border control issue culminating in policies which serve the purpose to discourage asylum seekers from arriving. The development has been contested by civil society organization and advocates for human rights issues. This thesis investigates the political discourse on asylum to explore the growing resistance in Australia to accept asylum seekers. A critical discourse analysis is applied on speeches given in the Australian parliament debating asylum policy. The study operationalize Fairclough’s three-dimensional model to conduct a textual analysis and explore what coinciding discourses influence the political asylum discourse. The analysis is based on a theoretical triangulation including Foucault’s notions of the liberal rationalization of governmental practices, ideas on how symbolic power is utilized to represent the asylum seeker and finally Benhabib’s theory on political membership is applied to advocate a rightsbased discourse. The result of the analysis acknowledge two contesting discourses, the dominating discourse being securitization of Australian borders and an opposing discourse which defend a humane approach towards asylum seekers.},
  author       = {Håkansson Lindh, Moa},
  keyword      = {Australia,Asylum,Discourse,Human rights,Illegal,Power,Security-threat},
  language     = {eng},
  note         = {Student Paper},
  title        = {Security threat or a fellow human being? - a critical discourse analysis of the asylum debate in the Australian parliament},
  year         = {2015},
}