‘Gimmegrants’ and ‘Fakeugees’: The Struggle to Stimulate Meaningful Debate Concerning Asylum Seekers
Associate Professor Anne Surma
Powerful voices in Australia shape the dominant narratives about Australia’s obligations towards and treatment of asylum seekers and refugees. As a result, public debate on this issue is both polarised and paralysed. In this lecture, I examine selected public texts, including those produced by Government and by refugees, which respond directly or indirectly to questions about Australia’s treatment of people seeking protection. The aim is to look more closely at the ways in which a particular understanding and use of language determine how we might think about and re-imagine the terms and tenor of the debate.
In this first lecture, we will look at one particular situation through which technological thinking plays out in the political domain without perhaps being visible to us as such, and the real consequences this has for us.