Social mechanisms explaining Danes’ attitudes to asylum seekers were analysed on two main dimensions: border control and rights allocation, in a national survey of 500 adult respondents in September 2013. Data show that the respondents supported exclusionary practices against asylum seekers much more than exclusion from rights. Three main mechanisms were simultaneously at play in both exclusionary dimensions: perceptions of threat, social distance (prejudice), and perceiving asylum seekers as not “genuine refugees”. Identifying asylum seekers’ as a security and socio-economic threat, as persons not in “real” fear of persecution, together with prejudicial attitudes to them had a boosting effect on excluding asylum seekers from the Danish collective in terms of entry and rights. Findings are discussed in light of existing theories on exclusionary attitudes to asylum seekers.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
The data collection in this study was supported by a research grant awarded to the first author by the Danish Israeli Study Foundation in memory of Josef and Regine Nachemsohn.
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- asylum seekers
- bogus refugees
- perceptions of threat
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cultural Studies
- Sociology and Political Science