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Why do Host Populations Turn against Refugees?: The Role of Knowledge Deficit and Relative Deprivation in Anti-Refugee Mobilisation
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Peace and Conflict Research.
2019 (English)Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (Two Years)), 20 credits / 30 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

The numbers of people on the move, fleeing from conflict, persecution and violence is increasing and so is the level of violence against those most vulnerable persons. The question why host populations turn against refugees in liberal European democracies as isolated phenomenon has, to my knowledge, not experienced great academic attention. This study investigates what societal conditions need to be fulfilled in order for violence to occur. Deriving from previous research on anti-refugee violence in developing countries and right-wing violence, I suggest the following argument: A high level of knowledge deficit regarding refugees and a high level of relative deprivation causes a high level of insecurity among society, which makes persons more susceptible to anti-refugee mobilisation, making it effective and thus leading to violence. In order to test this hypothesis, I conduct a structured focused comparison, investigating Saxony and North Rhine-Westphalia, two federal states within Germany. The first showing a high level of anti-refugee violence compared to the latter showing a low level of violence. The evidence found in the study shows some support for the proposed theory. A higher level of insecurity is prevailing in Saxony compared to North Rhine-Westphalia, yet the results are not as distinct as expected. Thus, more research is necessary in order to shed more light onto the phenomenon and develop countermeasures.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2019.
Keywords [en]
Anti-Refugee Violence, Anti-Refugee Mobilisation, Knowledge Deficit, Relative Deprivation, Contact Hypothesis, Germany, Saxony, North Rhine-Westphalia
National Category
Social Sciences
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-385503OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-385503DiVA, id: diva2:1324609
Subject / course
Peace and Conflict Studies
Educational program
Master Programme in Peace and Conflict Studies
Supervisors
Available from: 2019-06-18 Created: 2019-06-14 Last updated: 2019-06-18Bibliographically approved

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CiteExportLink to record
Permanent link

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Citation style
  • apa
  • ieee
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Output format
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