So Far, Yet So Close: Italian Parties’ Immigration Discourses During the Gentiloni and the First Conte Governments


The article compares the immigration discourses of three Italian parties (League, Five Star Movement and Democratic Party) under the Gentiloni and first Conte governments (2016–2019). To this aim, it performs a quantitative and qualitative analysis of the Facebook posts published by the parties and their leaders during seven periods of interest, with the goal of reconstructing the parties’ ideal-typical basic discourses. The results prove that the centre-left Democratic Party’s and the populist Five Star Movement’s discourses elude xenophobic forms of Othering of migrants. However, the qualitative analysis shows how these actors’ approaches actually ‘spectralise’ the migrants, thus legitimising stricter measures and lending credibility to the right-wing League’s discourse. The three discourses may instead be correlated with different degrees of policy dramatisation. These results underline the importance of integrating discourse analysis in party-comparative studies and contribute to the formulation of new hypotheses to be tested in other cases.

DOI Code: 10.1285/i20398573v7n1p199

Keywords: Migration; Othering; Framing; Basic discourse; Spectralisation; Policy dramatisation


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