Human smuggling and human trafficking in Helsingin Sanomat and Dagens Nyheter

Research output: ThesisMaster's thesisTheses

Abstract

Human smuggling and trafficking in human beings are phenomena that are often represented as global and growing problems. Human smuggling means that a person is taken to a country illegally which means that smuggling does not exist without states. Trafficking in human beings by contrast means the exploitation of persons which makes it a human rights violation. The news coverage about both phenomena, especially about human trafficking, has grown rapidly during the last decade. However, there has not been research on the news coverage about phenomena in Finland and the news coverage on trafficking in human beings is little researched even in European countries.

In this thesis I am comparing critically the newspaper content on the phenomena in Finland and in Sweden from the viewpoint of political and moral geography. Besides the contexts of the news, I paid attention to how identities in different scales, including the scale of the body, were represented in the news and how the boundaries between different identities were drawn in the news. As a methodology I used content analysis to classify the context of the news and discourse analysis to analyze how the different scales and boundaries between them were represented.

The results address that in Finland especially the human smuggling is considered as a border issue and Finland´s location between East and West is emphasized, which points out that Finland´s location is a crucial part of the Finnish identity. In addition the linkages between human trafficking and prostitution are often debated in the news from different aspects. In Sweden meanwhile its´ political activeness in the fight against trafficking in human beings and international crime especially in the EU level are emphasized. Trafficking in human beings likewise prostitution according to Swedish law is seen as violence against women and the news are strongly against buying of sex as well.

The states themselves, the state authorities and the EU are represented as active actors in both countries whereas international crime is represented as a threat and regions outside EU as chaotic. Additionally, illegal immigrants and the victims of trafficking are stigmatised. According to the results, the news coverage of both phenomena are used in constructing a more integrated national and European identity.
Translated title of the contributionHuman smuggling and human trafficking in Helsingin Sanomat and Dagens Nyheter
Original languageFinnish
Place of PublicationHelsinki
Publisher
Publication statusPublished - 03.05.2011
MoE publication typeG2 Master's thesis, polytechnic Master's thesis

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