BRIDGES Working Paper nº 9

Migration narratives in media and social media. The case of Spain

Fecha de publicación:
Moussa Bourekba, Blanca Garcés-Mascareñas, Berta Güell and Marina Marín

BRIDGES Working Papers 9 (February 2023)

This BRIDGES national report analyses the main narratives developed in traditional and social media around three different events in Spain: the Ceuta migration crisis in May 2021, with more than 10,000 irregular arrivals (including 1,500 minors) in less than 48 hours; the publication of a poster by the extreme-right wing party VOX, which blamed unaccompanied minors of causing too much welfare expenditures, during a regional electoral campaign in Madrid in May 2021; and the jihadist terrorist attacks carried out in Barcelona and Cambrils (Catalonia) in August 2017. In line with WP3 main objectives, the report addresses four interrelated questions: who gains access to the public arena and shapes prevailing narratives; where these narratives emerge and what path they take; what the main features of successful narratives are; and in which contexts and circumstances (thus when) certain narratives obtain a competitive edge. In terms of methodology, each event is analysed on the basis of the news published during the peak period (around two weeks) by three major newspapers (national and local) and two prime-time TV newscasts, as well as on social media data from Twitter. Though the three events are very different in nature, their analysis shows an increasing politicisation of immigration but with very particular features that still characterise the uniqueness of the Spanish case in the European context.