Frames and Narratives of Translation and of Migration in Europe (FANTAME)

Frames and Narratives of Translation and of Migration in Europe (FANTAME)
REFERENCE: PID2019-107971GA-I00

This project seeks to advance research on the role of translation as a key mechanism of migration control and on the study of cross-linguistically existent discourse patterns. The main research objectives are:

  1. To identify frames of migration and of translation in contact zones of migration in Spain and Germany, and to investigate whether particular frames can be observed cross-linguistically, which would imply the existence of cross-nationally identifiable discourse patterns or narratives on migration
  2. To analyse how these frames shape narratives of migration and of translation that are observable in both individual agents working in contact zones of migration and in organisational processes of translation in those zones.

While extensive scholarly work exists on how immigration is framed in the media, it is with the recent rise of populism in Europe that the language employed by politicians and echoed in the media is increasingly becoming a pan-European topic of both interest and concern. Conservative parties increasingly adopt extreme right-wing terminology, thus shifting the limits of acceptability further and further towards a xenophobic consensus. Discursive means of manipulation or presenting subjective opinion as objective truths have become frequent strategies.

While the media play a key role in shaping the discourse on immigration and determining which frames are used and perpetuated, much work remains to be done to investigate how particular frames are introduced and established, and especially how this shapes a cross-linguistic, pan-European discourse.

Recent calls to fund research within EU Horizon 2020 programme have placed emphasis on the discourse around the concept of migration and its socio-economic effects on host societies, such as distribution and impact of migration, migrant integration and education, or mobility patterns and security risks, among others. However, the centrality of language, and as a result of translation as an act of mediation that allows migrants to navigate their environment and fully participate in everyday life has been ignored. These approaches to the study of migration and its relationship to language are central to understanding migration processes within the European Union from a geopolitical perspective.

The specific objectives to be addressed by this project are:

  1. To identify through quantitative and contrastive data analysis the most recurrent frames on migration and translation to examine the connection between these two concepts
  2. To conduct a qualitative analysis of author stance and positioning towards migration in those recurrent frames
  3. To identify, through ethnographic methods of data collection and qualitative content analysis, public narratives of migration and of translation in the three areas mentioned above, and to evaluate the extent to which frames identified in RO2 shape such narratives
  4. To establish a connection between narratives of migration and of translation, and evaluate the extent to which such narratives contribute to the use of acts of translation as key strategic tools for control of migration

*Pending draft.

Principal researchers

Mario Bisiada
María Aguilar

This project was funded by the Spanish Ministry of Science, Innovation and Universities.

REFERENCE: PID2019-107971GA-I00


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