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Title: Empathic narratives : a case study of immigrati/e in Milan perceiving the 'migration crisis'
Author: Edirippulige Fernando, N.
ISNI:       0000 0004 9358 3961
Awarding Body: University of Westminster
Current Institution: University of Westminster
Date of Award: 2020
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This research investigates the perceptions of resident migrant communities in Milan’s diverse areas of ‘Zona 2’ and ‘Zona 9’ regarding the current ‘migration crisis’; and aims to determine whether growing discrimination has produced communal solidarity or purposeful disengagement in the affected communities. The findings, resulting from observation analysis and semi-structured interviews, suggest that there are no consistent patterns of discrimination from ‘established migrant’ communities towards recently-arrived ‘new migrants’. On another level, the research also highlights how there is growing discrimination directed towards the religion of Islam and its practitioners – a trend that is aligned with broader media narratives in Italy, and Europe more generally. This thesis provides a close analysis of the ways in which the ‘immigrati’s’ sense of narrativity is constructed and enacted within these local areas of Milan, and how participants of the observation are able to both shape and parse their own narratives within their communities. This thesis is therefore interested in the role played by empathy: the ways in which empathy is enacted or not enacted by the immigrati/e participants; participants’ ability to ‘understand’ the position of the refugee; and the extent to which they perceive parallels between their own experiences of voicelessness and of being ‘the other’ and those of the ‘new migrants’. In this process of self-narration and self-determination the participants express their rejection to consent to discriminatory discourses and terms such as immigrati/e, while actively identifying as stranieri/e and creating new forms of radical narrativity.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available