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The European Journal of Communication Research

Ed. by Averbeck-Lietz, Stefanie / d'Haenens, Leen

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Volume 43, Issue 3


The Syrian refugee crisis in Scandinavian newspapers

Jan Fredrik Hovden / Hilmar Mjelde / Jostein Gripsrud
Published Online: 2018-08-02 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/commun-2018-0013


This article maps and analyzes quantitatively how the Scandinavian news press covered the 2015 Syrian refugee crisis. Our analysis shows that in the coverage of the migration events, Denmark and Sweden occupy polar positions in terms of their newspapers’ emphasis, with the former appearing more negative towards the refugees, and the latter more positive. The Norwegian case is found in between these. Danish print media more often mention the negative economic consequences of the arrivals, and Swedish the positive moral ones, while Norway appears to occupy a middle ground in the Scandinavian discourse. We also find that the Scandinavian press writes less often about the negative consequences of refugees coming than the European press in general. However, the humanitarian aspects of the crisis became less prominent in the Scandinavian press over time, as in the rest of Europe.

Keywords: Syrian refugee crisis; Scandinavian newspapers; immigration discourse; immigration coverage; framing


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About the article

Published Online: 2018-08-02

Published in Print: 2018-08-28

Citation Information: Communications, Volume 43, Issue 3, Pages 325–356, ISSN (Online) 1613-4087, ISSN (Print) 0341-2059, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/commun-2018-0013.

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