Beyond fear and hate: Mobilising people power to create a new narrative on migration and diversity

Heaven Crawley, Simon McMahon

Research output: Book/ReportOther report

Abstract

Across Europe political and media debates on migration and diversity have become increasingly negative. There is growing evidence that narratives of fear and hate have moved from fringe positions to occupy the mainstream, changing the terms of the debate in many countries. These narratives are important. They set the boundaries of what are considered publicly acceptable opinions
and behaviours, and who does – and does not – have a voice. Some views may dominate, others may go unheard.

And they have consequences.

Negative political and media debates on migration and diversity undermine the integration of those who are newly arrived and they do far more than that. They also threaten relationships within and between long established communities, undermining a common sense of identity and solidarity and raising questions about the
values on which societies are based.

In this context it is important to ask who is driving dominant narratives on migration and diversity and for what purpose? Is this just about certain sections of the mainstream media or does political leadership make a difference to how people think – and talk – about issues of migration and diversity? Is there space for
the development of alternative voices? If migration is a ‘touchstone’ issue that taps into people’s deepest fears and anxieties, is it possible to capture and amplify some of the powerful counter-narratives developing at a local level to move the debate about migration and diversity beyond fear and hate?
Original languageEnglish
PublisherBen and Jerry's
Commissioning bodyBen and Jerrys
Number of pages34
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2016

Keywords

  • migration
  • asylum
  • public attitudes
  • UK
  • Germany
  • Netherlands
  • Sweden

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Sciences(all)

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