Published on November 23, 2007
Intercultural stereotypes: Intercultural stereotypes Rikke Skovgaard Andersen Audiences and Public Spheres in Europe 09-01-2007 Agenda: Agenda Stereotyping during EU-expansion 2004 presentation of study critique Ex. 1: Fairy tale nation Ex. 2: Islamists at EU’s doorstep Discussion Lack of literature - cases and discussion will substitute New neighbours: New neighbours Fleming, Michael (2005) 1st of May 2004: Cyprus, the Czech Republic, Estonia, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Malta, Poland, Slovakia, and Slovenia join the EU British media coverage Stereotypes: Stereotypes ”simple prejudgements acceded to by individuals to enable them to function in society” (p. 19) Constructed by social groups Stereotypes reduce anxiety (sense of belonging by sharing categories + complexity reduction) Acceptance/promotion of stereotypes is not harmonious within a social group (or nation) Study: Study Stereotyping in British newspapers and magazines Right-wing press: The Sun, The Daily Mail, The Daily Telegraph, The Sunday Telegraph, The Mail on Sunday Liberal press: The Guardian, The Observer Findings I: Findings I Stereotypes found: Unsuccessful economies of new states (burden to the EU and UK) Risk of mass immigration to the UK (beggars and ’benefit tourists’) Findings II: Findings II Very dominant in right-wing press (especially tabloids): highly simplistic portrayal of new EU-members rhetorics: ’benefit tourists’, ’menace’, ’flood tide of millions of immigrants’ Framing: ’Passport to the promised land. Slovakians arriving at Heathrow: From Saturday their homeland is in the EU’ (Daily Mail) Findings III: Findings III In liberal, quality press (and to some extent in right-wing quality press) supplemented by cultural and human interest stories: ”attempted to allow members of the accecing states to voice their own concerns, and to describe and explain their countries to a British audience” (p. 25) Rethorics: ’Central-European’ instead of ’Eastern-European’ Framing: ’Culture comes home’ (The Guardian), more nuanced economic stories Commentary on other media’s negative portrayal: ’In from the cold’ (The Observer) Conclusions: Conclusions Right-wing press: Mis-informing British citizens ”Ethnocentric if not racist” (p. 25) Liberal press: More nuanced coverage ”ground discussion of the acceding countries and their population in both time and place” (p. 25) Critique: Critique Results should be taken with a grain of salt Serious lack of methodological explanation Time sample? N? Coding? Still...: Still... ”Stereotypes need to be challenged, even positive ones. For stereotypes can and do restrict substantive cross-group communication” (p. 26) Obstacle to European integration, the development of a European identity and cultural exchange in general Stereotyping of nations and cultures is problematic in today’s Europe Fairy tale nation: Fairy tale nation Example 1 Stereotyping Denmark? I: Stereotyping Denmark? I ”If this is how foreign media portray Denmark then I am not really sure what I know about other countries anymore.” C., 26, Danish student Stereotyping Denmark? II: Stereotyping Denmark? II ’The State of Denmark’ Background story on the Mohammad cartoon crisis February 19, 2006 60 Minutes American current affairs programme Intro (00.00) & outro (11.10) Constant referencing to fairy tale figures and concepts in narration and images: H.C. Andersen, the little mermaid, monarchy, the queen, ’prosperous’, picturesque’, Hamlet paraphrases Islamists at EU’s doorstep: Islamists at EU’s doorstep Example 2 Stereotyping Turkey? I: Stereotyping Turkey? I Fundamentalists? “French President Jacques Chirac and German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder ganged up to block Turkey — home to 66million Muslims — from joining. The move, seen as a dangerous snub to the Islamic world, came despite ten other countries being formally let in under a historic deal last night at an EU summit in Copenhagen, Denmark.” (The Sun, December 14, 2002) Stereotyping Turkey? II: Stereotyping Turkey? II Warm-blooded and short-tempered? “Furious Turkey accused France of “blackmail and discrimination”” (The Sun, December 14, 2002) “Europeans are "cold blooded", that was one assessment Audrey and the team got when she went to a coffee shop in Istanbul to gauge Turkey's response to Europe.” (BBC, November 7, 2006) Stereotyping Turkey? III: Stereotyping Turkey? III Terrorists? “The PM [Tony Blair] brushed off warnings it [Turkey enters EU] would open the back door to terrorism by letting in millions of immigrants […] But it took eight hours of haggling and a Euro fudge to convince doubting leaders.“ (The Sun, December 18, 2004) Discussion: Discussion Stereotyping of Turkey is a general trend in European media Media stereotyping is a serious threat to Turkey’s possible membership Stereotyping of Denmark was a general trend in Western media during the cartoon crisis With respect to the presence of anti-immigration sentiments and strict immigration laws Denmark is no different than most European countries. Expecting Denmark to live up to the stereotype ’fairy tale nation’ added fuel to the cartoon crisis What can be done to ensure more nuanced media coverage of complex issues?