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Refugee without refuge: Wasim, Phillip Adams, and a nation divided

Pedersen, A. and Fozdar, F. (2010) Refugee without refuge: Wasim, Phillip Adams, and a nation divided. Journal of Pacific Rim Psychology, 4 (1). pp. 7-18.

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This study follows on from previous work (Pedersen et al., 2008) that examined the situation of the stateless asylum seeker, Wasim. In the present study, a blog discussion stemming from an editorial about Wasim (Adams, 2008) was analysed. Participants were identified as 'Do-Gooders' and 'Do-Badders'; categories that indicate their orientation to asylum seeker debates (labels originated from the blog itself). We identified several features of the blog discussion. While similar themes and discursive devices were used by the two groups, they were used very differently. The Do-Gooders were more likely to offer accurate information about asylum seekers or Wasim and to show humani- tarian concerns for Wasim and others like him. The Do-Badders were more likely to display emotion, show the 'Phillip Adams Effect' (addressing the author of the editorial, Phillip Adams, in their sub- missions) and name-call. However, there was no significant difference with respect to whether participants addressed Wasim's situation specifically rather than focusing on the general issue of asylum seekers. The blog demonstrates, in microcosm, the divided orientation of Australians regard- ing asylum seekers.

Item Type: Journal Article
Murdoch Affiliation(s): School of Psychology
School of Social Sciences and Humanities
Publisher: Australian Academic Press Pty Ltd
Copyright: Cambridge University Press
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