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Unaccompanied Young MigrantsIdentity, Care and Justice$
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Sue Clayton, Anna Gupta, and Katie Willis

Print publication date: 2019

Print ISBN-13: 9781447331865

Published to Policy Press Scholarship Online: September 2019

DOI: 10.1332/policypress/9781447331865.001.0001

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Narrating the young migrant journey: themes of self-representation

Narrating the young migrant journey: themes of self-representation

(p.115) Four Narrating the young migrant journey: themes of self-representation
Unaccompanied Young Migrants

Sue Clayton

Policy Press

This chapter first offers an analysis of media representation of refugees through print press and television. UK media tends to present refugee stereotypes of these people as either hostile and threatening, or as individuated victims with little or no agency. This can have a crippling impact not only on how the young people are treated, but on their sense of identity. The chapter also considers how creative practice (specifically theatre and film-making) with young migrants can both aid them in building new forms of self-representation, and counter negative stereotypes. The chapter identifies various themes of meaning that have emerged in the author’s recording of extensive testimonies with the young people: loss and anger; mourning and survival; outpourings of grief; missing mothers and searching for symbolic mothers; the significance of friendships; experiences of rage and anger; and finally, a development of pride and aspiration for the future.

Keywords:   creative practice, media representation, refugee stereotypes, selfrepresentation, testimonies

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