National Rhetorics in the Syrian Immigration Crisis
Victims, Frauds, and Floods
Rhetoric & Public Affairs
Published by: Michigan State University Press
Imprint: Michigan State University Press
The Syrian refugee crisis seriously challenged countries in the Middle East, Europe, the United States, and elsewhere in the world. It provoked reactions from humanitarian generosity to anti-immigrant warnings of the destruction of the West. It contributed to the United Kingdom’s “Brexit” from the European Union and the election of Donald Trump as president of the United States. This book is a unique study of rhetorical responses to the crisis through a comparative approach that analyzes the discourses of leading political figures in ten countries, including gateway, destination, and tertiary countries for immigration, such as Turkey, several European countries, and the United States. These national discourses constructed the crisis and its refugees so as to welcome or shun them, in turn shaping the character and identity of the receiving countries, for both domestic and international audiences, as more or less humanitarian, nationalist, Muslim-friendly, Christian, and so forth. This book is essential reading for scholars wishing to understand how European and other countries responded to this crisis, discursively constructing refugees, themselves, and an emerging world order.
“This is a fascinating volume. Identifying and interpreting the changing immigration rhetoric of national leaders in ten countries, it puts the findings into a rich historical and political context. Enabling comparative analysis, the book identifies differences between national rhetorics but also common argumentative and metaphorical framings, which, in shaping how people think of ‘us’ and ‘them,’ have become central to politics around the globe.”
—Alan Finlayson, Professor of Political and Social Theory, University of East Anglia, United Kingdom