This article discusses the relationship between the socio-economic success of the Chinese in Canada, news discourse and the problematization of nearly 600 undocumented Fujianese migrants who arrived on Canada's western shores from July-September 1999. Our interests rest in examining the thematic patterns of the coverage, i.e. how the migrants' arrivals were 'problematized' and transformed into a discursive crisis centred on the constructs of 'risk' and, more precisely, 'risk avoidance'. It is our contention that news reporting on the migrants holds broader ideological resonances, extending beyond a unilateral concern about the perceived failure of the Canadian immigration and refugee systems. We argue that the reporting of these events serves as an index for collective insecurities stemming from social change, racial integration and contested Euro-Canadian hegemony.

Additional Metadata
Keywords Crisis, Interpellation, Media discourse, Problematization, Racialization, Risk
Journal Ethnic and Racial Studies
Citation
Hier, S.P. (Sean P.), & Greenberg, J. (2002). Constructing a discursive crisis: Risk, problematization and illegal Chinese in Canada. Ethnic and Racial Studies, 25(3), 490–513.