About this Research Topic
This Research Topic seeks to explore the production and consumption of the complex narratives surrounding the condition of exile experienced by refugees, asylum seekers, and undocumented migrants. While within public sphere discourses we can find varying degrees of antipathy and sympathy towards migrants, much of the existing scholarship points to the persistence of a hostile immigration environment legitimated by dominant media, political narratives and legal regimes. The question therefore arises of the extent to which these public sphere narratives impact everyday experiences of belonging, and how they might be understood and potentially challenged both within media and political domains and law, and by migrant groups themselves.
For example, previous research has revealed how migrant communities will often circumnavigate host narratives, preferring instead to access sources that enable them to maintain links with their homeland and, indeed, that help them to contest negative representation through the development of alternative spaces of communication and community building activities. Yet this form of active media use may not be as readily available to refugees, asylum seekers, and undocumented migrants depending on their origin story.
In this regard their subject position is based on a conditional form of belonging set within an intricate hierarchy of inclusions-exclusion, a hierarchy that includes legal environments of host countries and an international legal environment, that may be difficult to successfully navigate from a place of exile.
The idea behind this Research Topic stems from a recently convened workshop that reflected on the divergent ways in which asylum and immigration have been articulated in media, policy and law contexts and how exiled communities respond to and/or challenge public sphere discourses on both a country and international level. While the talks from the workshop will form part of the Research Topic, the Topic Editors also welcome external submissions to ensure that the collection captures global debates on narrating migration in the context outlined above.
Submissions to this Research Topic might consider the following:
- How narratives of inclusion and exclusion in relation to refugees, asylum seekers, and undocumented migrants are articulated in specific national or local media and policy contexts.
- The extent to which humanitarian narratives might challenge or reinforce damaging constructions of meaning around exile.
- How refugees, asylum seekers, and undocumented migrants experience and respond to media and political narratives about their situation.
- How refugees, asylum seekers, and undocumented migrants potentially challenge dominant public sphere discourses about immigration and asylum through their own media and multimedia use.
- How does the legal environment contribute to the rise of specific narratives and their degree of intensity, as well as to the challenges to the narratives. What part do narratives play in challenges to the legal environment, both by migrants and others.
Keywords: Migration, Exile, Asylum, Immigration, Narrative
Important Note: All contributions to this Research Topic must be within the scope of the section and journal to which they are submitted, as defined in their mission statements. Frontiers reserves the right to guide an out-of-scope manuscript to a more suitable section or journal at any stage of peer review.