Publication details

“Fortress Europe is an insult to the values of the EU” : The legitimation of migrant acceptance in the human security speech acts of Members of the European Parliament



Year of publication 2023
Type Article in Periodical
Magazine / Source European Policy Analysis
MU Faculty or unit

Faculty of Social Studies

Keywords European Parliament; human security; irregular migration; legitimation; plenary debates
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Description Scholars agree that securitized discourses mainly drive migration policy. However, to fully understand the migration discourse, it is necessary to look also at the discourse legitimating the acceptance of migrants, refugees, and asylum seekers. Namely, how Members of the European Parliament (MEPs) legitimate the potential acceptance of migrants in EU plenary debates within the human security speech acts that prevail in the European Parliament plenary debates. By exploring legitimation categories, I show that human security discourse might remain part of the exclusion process, similarly to other security concepts and discursive strategies. In other words, the results show that in human security speech acts, MEPs evoke the “language of exclusion practices” containing the victimhood trope and building the “hierarchy of vulnerability.” Moreover, MEPs' efforts to legitimize immigration in this way might be counterproductive. In particular, the article discusses whether attempts to elicit grand emotions such as pity or shame helps to attract the audience.
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