The Securitization of Migration

University essay from Malmö universitet/Fakulteten för kultur och samhälle (KS)

Abstract: This study looks at the discursive threat constructions of political elites in Hungary during a time span corresponding to the European Migration Crisis. Securitization theory is used in conjunction with a Critical Discourse Analysis to analyse the communicated threat perceptions that led to the extraordinary security measure of building fences. Analysis finds that there was a clear grammar of security in all discourses – on both the state and the regional level - in identifying migration as a possible threat. Characteristics of the discourses varied between the state agents in different contexts in terms of wording, the referent objects they focused on and the utterance of speech acts. The study demonstrates that securitization did successfully happen, but argues that it was likely the result of securitization not happening on a regional level prior. In the study, the European Migration Crisis, the migration-security nexus, and the Copenhagen School’s earlier work: Identity, Migration and the New Security Agenda in Europe are also explored. The latter work is incorporated in the analysis by testing its correspondence with the communicated threat constructions in Hungary. The study finds strong correlations between the theorized, emerging security landscape and the communicated threat perceptions.

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