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Criminal or criminal image?

Understanding the role of media messages about migration on juveniles’ narratives



Description: Whilst migration is increasingly problematised and criminalised, concepts with a negative subordinate dominate our political and social debate. Theories (e.g. moral panics), topical reports and recent treaties, indicate the intertwining of these processes and the media. Despite the acknowledgement of this interconnection, existing research lacks an in-depth perspective. Unlike the connection between representation and stereotyping of migrants and public opinion, the creation of self-image, and self-stereotypes of those who are represented, lacks scientific knowledge. This research will provide insight into the personal stories (i.e. narratives) of youngsters and how they are influenced by media-discourses on migration. A combination of participant observation, visual methodologies, in-depth interviews, and focus groups will provide insight in the narratives of youngsters and the possible influence of media messages. By creating visual deliverables, we will influence the social and scientific debate, and the climate of hardened viewpoints towards migration.

Outputs: We aim to communicate our research findings to a broad public. The reproduction of our collected information consists of documentation, images and storytelling produced with and by the participants. By creating powerful (visual) messages substantiated with a scientific background and strong stories, we will be able to stimulate public interest and social action understandable and accessible for different groups in society. A broad public will be reached through different materials such as articles, opinion pieces and short videos by researcher and participants. Research outcomes will be published both in scientific and vulgarizing online journals to reach academics, professionals and policy makers.

CoordinatorAn Nuytiens and Jenneke Christiaens (Scientific promotors)

Researchers (from CRiS)Jasmien Bougrine

Funding: VUB

Duration: November 2018 – November 2022