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Migration and Welfare : Differential Grievabilities in the Swedish Right-Wing Continuum

  • Hägerbäck, Felicia
  • Norocel, Ov Cristian
Publication Date
Jan 01, 2024
DOI: 10.33134/njmr.678
DiVA - Academic Archive On-line
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In this study, we examine the way access to welfare provision for migrants is articulated discursively among three right-of-center parties in Sweden. For this, we suggest two theoretical advances. First, deploying the concept of the right-wing continuum, we highlight the gradual and reciprocal alignment between mainstream right-of-center and radical-right populist parties. Second, by resorting to the concept of grievability, we analyze the implications for migrants of such an ideological alignment. We argue that this specific alignment along the right-wing continuum is best understood by means of a series of discursive (re)articulations, whereby migrants have been progressively excluded, devalued, and construed as ungrievable, to the point where the different actors on the right-wing continuum no longer find collaboration among themselves unthinkable. Employing a methodological approach embedded in Political Discourse Theory, we evidence how the radical-right populist Sweden Democrats (Sverigedemokraterna, SD) has articulated welfare provision in a restrictive manner, which consequently excluded migrants. Concomitantly, the mainstream right-of-center parties, namely the liberal-conservative Moderate Party (Moderaterna, M), and the social-conservative Christian Democrats (Kristdemokraterna, KD), have gradually radicalized their positions and aligned with those of the SD.

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