The politics of language and the language of politics

04.09.2015 |

  • Posted by Nigel BarkerNigel Barker
  • 3027674-poster-p-1-banksy-and-idris-elba-stand-with-victims-of-syrian-civil-war-in-this-animated-video
    Banksy ©

    Language is an essential part of communication, the words we choose not only convey a verbal message but they are signifiers of the person we are and the person we wish to be perceived as.


    MPAD became acutely aware of the scale of the Syrian refugee crisis nearly three years ago, whilst we were working with Shelterbox.


    Whilst most of us in the UK were tucking in to our Christmas turkey and opening presents men, women and children were fleeing war, oppression, torture, and rape.


    We know this because Mark [Picken] was on the phone to international embassies desperately trying to get authorization for press releases about the situation.


    Everyone we spoke to on the ground was saying ‘This problem is huge, and it’s only going to get worse.’


    Shelterbox had stopped sending their famous white tents to the region, over fears that they had become easy bombing targets due to their colour being so visible. Instead they sent boxes of blankets, cooking equipment and even colouring books and crayons for the kids.


    Kids like Alan Kurdi. *see below.


    Not The Summer of Love


    This summer has seen one of the most vitriolic and un-compassionate attacks on these refugees – and it hasn’t been by soldiers. It has been by our own media and politicians, with language being the weapon of choice.


    David Cameron described ‘Swarms of migrants crossing the Mediterranean.’

    Share this: