Just a reminder: We’ve got some really interesting events coming up this week research-wise in MCC. Today (10/10/16) Damian Guzek, a visiting scholar from the Institute of Political Science and Journalism, University of Silesia in Katowice, Poland will be talking about his research:
The talk is in Claus Moser, CM0.12 at 4.30
Damian has also set reading for our first PGR reading group of the term on Wednesday (please contact me if you’d like further information about this!).
On Tuesday, the first session of the MCC-Sociology seminar series is taking place, with a talk by Siobhan Holohan entitled: “The Swarm on our Streets”: Neo-colonial discourses of otherness in the ‘refugee crisis’
This paper begins by exploring dominant media discourses surrounding human rights campaigns, focusing on the ‘refugee crisis’ in the summer of 2015. Taking as its starting point Hannah Arendt’s (1943) observations on the public/political response to the mass exile of Jews during World War Two, We Refugees, I want to argue that the mediatized reaction to those escaping conflict followed similar ideological patterns – fear, suspicion, antipathy. However, in this paper I also want to examine the role that human rights campaigners had to play in this construction, or indeed re-construction, of refugees as worthy of help. In other words, on what terms are migrants or refugees deemed acceptable and to what extent do those that seek to support them adopt what we might argue is a discourse of otherness?
There already exists a complex and sometimes fraught relationship between social campaigners and the media forums that they rely on to disperse their message, not least due to the rise in digital mediums that both bypass and intersect with traditional forms of media. However, at the same time as media platforms have become progressively more intertwined, ideologically complex, and perhaps as a result more responsive to shifting narratives and the changing public mood about the other, I argue that the message proffered by human rights campaigners becomes increasingly devoid of the ‘counter’ aspect of the counter-narrative. In response to this reading of the refugee crisis, I will offer the conclusion that while relationships between the various actors with a stake in the construction and counter-construction of the refugee discourse have become increasingly complex and dynamic, the discourse surrounding the event remains remarkably stable.
Siobhan’s talk is 12-1 in the Chancellor’s Building, CBC0.015
It would be great to see people at either, or indeed both, of these events!