De- and recontextualising xenophobia

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Within the realm of critical discourse analysis (CDA), this chapter builds on previous research into how South Africa’s print media portray non-nationals. The case study concerns the xenophobic/Afrophobic attacks that erupted in the Alexandra township, north of Johannesburg, on the 11th of May 2008. In the aftermath of the killings, lootings, rapes and displacement of thousands, many theories were offered for the cause of the outbreaks but the only consensus reached thus far is that the social and economic causes were multifarious, complex and not mutually exclusive. This chapter aims to look at the contribution of the most important tabloid, and best-selling daily in South Africa, in creating stereotypical perceptions about non-nationals prior and during the time of the vicious outbreaks. To this end, excerpts from this tabloid are analysed for metaphoric representations of non-nationals.


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