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Document Type

Campus Access

Degree Program

Communication

Degree Type

Master of Arts (M.A.)

Year Degree Awarded

2011

Month Degree Awarded

February

Keywords

Immigration, Immigrants, Media, Internet, Advocacy, Economy, Race, Citizenship

Abstract

This thesis examines the discursive arguments made by activist and advocacy organizations that are active supporters or opponents of immigration in the United States. This project especially considers the role of new media as a way for different organizations to distribute their perspectives, construct knowledge, and organize support around their stances on immigration. While old media such as television, radio, and print continue to be important in framing the issue of immigration, new media such as websites and social networking, as well as media technology such as text messaging, are starting to reorganize and expand the spaces in which these controversial debates take place. In recognition of the complexity and divisiveness of the immigration debate, this thesis takes into account a diverse group of organizations that focus on different aspects of immigration including the role of temporary migrant workers, undocumented immigrants, and legal immigrants. In the post 9/11 era controversy over immigration has been renewed and heightened. Immigrants and migrants moving from the Global South have especially been targeted by pervasive anti-immigrant rhetoric dispersed by the media, politicians, and civil society groups. This thesis analyzes how culture, the economy, and citizenship, as well as race and racism are framed by both immigration critics and advocates as a means of impacting legislation, swaying public opinion, and in constructing a vision for the future of immigration and immigrants in the United States.

First Advisor

Paula Chakravartty

Second Advisor

Mari Castañeda

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