Romani Studies

"A stinking filthy race of people inbred with criminality" A discourse analysis of prejudicial talk about Gypsies in discussion forums

Romani Studies (2014), 24, (1), 25–42.

Abstract

Gypsies have been shown to be a group subject to extreme prejudice and discrimination in the UK. The current research explores how Gypsies are portrayed and talked about within UK discussion forums. A discourse analysis was conducted on three discussion forums concerning Gypsies and how they should be treated. The analysis identified the following strategies as being commonly used to express hatred towards, and to argue against right for, Gypsies: (1) referring to Gypsies as the ‘other’ who are abnormal; (2) constructing criminality as a key characteristic of Gypsies; (3) suggesting that some Gypsies are ‘bogus’, which was used to argue against all Gypsies; and (4) presenting Gypsies as outside of the law and given favouritism over settled British communities. The findings are discussed in light of existing literature surrounding the prejudice towards Gypsies and other minorities and suggestions for overcoming this prejudice are presented.

Access Token
£25.00
If you have private access to this content, please log in with your username and password here

Augoustinos, Martha, and Every, Danielle. 2007. The language of "race" and prejudice: A discourse of denial, reason, and liberal-practical politics. Journal of Language and Social Psychology 26(2): 123-41. The language of "race" and prejudice: A discourse of denial, reason, and liberal-practical politics Journal of Language and Social Psychology 26 123 41 Google Scholar

Billig, Michael. 1987. Arguing and thinking: A rhetorical approach to social psychology. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press Arguing and thinking: A rhetorical approach to social psychology Google Scholar

Billig, Michael. 1988. The notion of ‘prejudice’: Some rhetorical and ideological aspects. Text 8: 91-110. The notion of ‘prejudice’: Some rhetorical and ideological aspects Text 8 91 110 Google Scholar

Billig, Michael. 1991. Ideology and opinions. London: Sage Ideology and opinions Google Scholar

Billig, Michael. 2001. Humour and hatred: The racist jokes of the Ku Klux Klan. Discourse & Society 12(3): 267-89. Humour and hatred: The racist jokes of the Ku Klux Klan Discourse & Society 12 267 89 Google Scholar

Billig, Michael. Henri Tajfel's ‘cognitive aspects of prejudice’ and the psychology of bigotry. British Journal of Social Psychology 41: 171-88. Henri Tajfel's ‘cognitive aspects of prejudice’ and the psychology of bigotry British Journal of Social Psychology 41 171 88 Google Scholar

Bomberger, Ann. 2004. Ranting about race: Crushed eggshells in computer-mediated communication. Computers and Composition 21(2): 197-216. Ranting about race: Crushed eggshells in computer-mediated communication Computers and Composition 21 197 216 Google Scholar

Bowers, Jake. 2010. Traveller Times online FAQ pack Gypsies and Travellers: Their lifestyle, history and culture. http://www.travellerstimes.org.uk/downloads/lifestyle_history_and_culture_24052010111520.pdf Google Scholar

Burke, Shani, and Goodman, Simon. 2012. "Bring back Hitler's gas chambers": Asylum seeking, Nazis and facebook: A discursive analysis. Discourse and Society, 23(1): 19-33. Bring back Hitler's gas chambers: Asylum seeking, Nazis and facebook: A discursive analysis Discourse and Society 23 19 33 Google Scholar

Cemlyn, Sarah, Greenfields, Margaret, Burnett, Sally, Mathews, Zoe, and Witwell, Chris. 2009. Inequalities experienced by Gypsy and Traveller communities: A review. NHS Evidence - Ethnicity and Health: Equality and Human Rights Commission 12: 1-361. Inequalities experienced by Gypsy and Traveller communities: A review NHS Evidence - Ethnicity and Health: Equality and Human Rights Commission 12 1 361 Google Scholar

Clark, Colin, and Campbell, Elaine. 2000 ‘Gypsy invasion’: A critical analysis of newspaper reaction to Czech and Slovak asylum-seekers in Britain 1997. Romani Studies 10(1): 23-47. ‘Gypsy invasion’: A critical analysis of newspaper reaction to Czech and Slovak asylum-seekers in Britain 1997 Romani Studies 10 23 47 Google Scholar

Copsey, Nigel. 2007. Changing course or changing clothes? Reflections on the ideological evolution of the British National Party 1996-2006. Patterns of Prejudice 41(1): 61-82. Changing course or changing clothes? Reflections on the ideological evolution of the British National Party 1996-2006 Patterns of Prejudice 41 61 82 Google Scholar

Corlett, David. 2002. Asylum seekers and the new racism. Dissent 59(8): 46-7. Asylum seekers and the new racism Dissent 59 46 7 Google Scholar

Dawson, Robert. 2000. Crime and prejudice: Traditional Travellers. Derbyshire: Robert Dawson Crime and prejudice: Traditional Travellers Google Scholar

Donahue, Mark, McVeigh, Robbie, and Ward, Maureen. 2003. ‘Misli, Crush, Misli: Irish Travellers and nomadisam, Irish Traveller movement and Traveller Movement. Available from http://www.itmtrav.ie/uploads/publication/MISLI-CRUSH-MISLI.pdf Google Scholar

Edwards, Derek, and Potter, Jonathan. 1992. Discursive psychology. London: Sage Publications Discursive psychology Google Scholar

Ellis, Geraint, and McWhirter, Catharine. 2008. Land-use planning and Traveller-Gypsies: Towards non-prejudicial practice. Planning and Practice Research 23(1): 77-99. Land-use planning and Traveller-Gypsies: Towards non-prejudicial practice Planning and Practice Research 23 77 99 Google Scholar

Every, Danielle, and Augoustinos, Martha. 2007. Constructions of racism in the Australian parliamentary debates on asylum seekers. Discourse & Society 18(4): 411-36. Constructions of racism in the Australian parliamentary debates on asylum seekers Discourse & Society 18 411 36 Google Scholar

Goodman, Simon and Rowe, Lottie. 2014. "Maybe it is prejudice… But it is NOT racism": Negotiating racism in discussion forums about Gypsies. Discourse & Society 25(1): 32-46. Maybe it is prejudice… But it is NOT racism: Negotiating racism in discussion forums about Gypsies Discourse & Society 25 32 46 Google Scholar

Goodman, Simon and Speer, Susan. 2007. Category use in the construction of asylum seekers. Critical Discourse Studies 4(2): 165-85. Category use in the construction of asylum seekers Critical Discourse Studies 4 165 85 Google Scholar

Gomez-Berrocal, Carman, and Navas, Marisol. 2000. Predictors of blatant and subtle prejudice towards Gypsies'. Revista de Psicología Social 15(1): 3-30 Predictors of blatant and subtle prejudice towards Gypsies' Revista de Psicología Social 15 3 30 Google Scholar

Hewitt, John, and Stokes, Randall. 1975. Disclaimers. American Sociological Review 40: 1-11 Disclaimers American Sociological Review 40 1 11 Google Scholar

Holloway, Sarah. 2005. Articulating otherness? White rural residents talk about Gypsy-Travellers'. Royal Geographical Society 30(3): 351-67. Articulating otherness? White rural residents talk about Gypsy-Travellers' Royal Geographical Society 30 351 67 Google Scholar

Johnson, Andrew, and Goodman, Simon 2013. Reversing racism and the elite conspiracy: Strategies used by the British National Party leader in the justification of policy. Discourse, Context and Media 2(3): 156-64. Reversing racism and the elite conspiracy: Strategies used by the British National Party leader in the justification of policy Discourse, Context and Media 2 156 64 Google Scholar

Kabachnik, Peter. 2009. The culture of crime examining representations of Irish Travellers in Traveller and the riches. Romani Studies 19(1): 49-63. The culture of crime examining representations of Irish Travellers in Traveller and the riches Romani Studies 19 49 63 Google Scholar

Kabachnik, Peter. 2010. Place Invaders: Constructing the nomadic threat in England. The Geographical Review 100(1): 90-108. Place Invaders: Constructing the nomadic threat in England The Geographical Review 100 90 108 Google Scholar

Kenrick, Donald, and Bakewell, Sian. 1995. On the verge: The Gypsies of England. Hatfield: University of Hatfield Press On the verge: The Gypsies of England Google Scholar

Leudar, Ivan, and Nekvapil, Jiri. 2000. Presentations of Romanies in the Czech media: On category work in television debates. Discourse & Society 11(4): 587-13. Presentations of Romanies in the Czech media: On category work in television debates Discourse & Society 11 587 13 Google Scholar

Liegeois, Jean-Pierre. 1987. Gypsies and Travellers. Strasbourg: Council for Cultural Co-operation, The council of Europe. Gypsies and Travellers Google Scholar

Lynn, Nick, and Lea, Susan. 2003. ‘A phantom menace and the new apartheid’: The social construction of asylum-seekers in the United Kingdom. Discourse society 14(4): 425-52. ‘A phantom menace and the new apartheid’: The social construction of asylum-seekers in the United Kingdom Discourse society 14 425 52 Google Scholar

McConahay, John. 1986. Modern racism, ambivalence, and the modern racism scale. In: Dovidio, J. F. and Gaertner, S. L., eds. Prejudice, discrimination and racism. New York: Academic Press, 91-125 Prejudice, discrimination and racism 91 125 Google Scholar

Meek, Rosie. 2007. The experience of a young Gypsy-Traveller in the transition from custody to community: An interpretive phenomenological analysis. Legal and Criminological Psychology 12: 133-47. The experience of a young Gypsy-Traveller in the transition from custody to community: An interpretive phenomenological analysis Legal and Criminological Psychology 12 133 47 Google Scholar

O'Nions, Helen. 1995. The marginalisation of Gypsies. Web Journal of Current Legal Issues 3, http://webjcli.ncl.ac.uk/articles3/onions3.html http://webjcli.ncl.ac.uk/articles3/onions3.html The marginalisation of Gypsies Web Journal of Current Legal Google Scholar

Potter, Jonathan. 1996. Representing reality: Discourse, rhetoric and social construction. London: Sage. Representing reality: Discourse, rhetoric and social construction Google Scholar

Potter, Jonathan. 1997. Discourse analysis as a way of analysing naturally occurring talk. In: Silverman D., ed. Qualitative research: Theory, method and practice. London: Sage, 144-60. Qualitative research: Theory, method and practice 144 60 Google Scholar

Powell, Ryan. 2008. Understanding the stigmatization of Gypsies: Power and the dialectics of (dis)identification. Housing Theory and Society 25(2): 87-109. Understanding the stigmatization of Gypsies: Power and the dialectics of (dis)identification Housing Theory and Society 25 87 109 Google Scholar

Richardson, Joanna. 2006. Talking about Gypsies: The notion of discourse as control. Housing Studies 21(1): 77-96 Talking about Gypsies: The notion of discourse as control Housing Studies 21 77 96 Google Scholar

Schneeweis, Adina. 2009. Talking differences: Discourse about the Gypsy/Roma in Europe since 1989. University of Minnesota. Talking differences: Discourse about the Gypsy/Roma in Europe since 1989 Google Scholar

Stonewall. 2003. Profiles of prejudice. The nature of prejudice in England: In-depth analysis of findings. London: Stonewall/citizenship 21, July 2003. Profiles of prejudice. The nature of prejudice in England: In-depth analysis of findings Google Scholar

Tileaga, Cristian. 2005. Accounting for extreme prejudice and legitimating blame in talk about the Romanies. Discourse & Society 16(5): 03-624. Accounting for extreme prejudice and legitimating blame in talk about the Romanies Discourse & Society 16 03 624 Google Scholar

Tileaga, Cristian. 2006. Representing the ‘other’: A discourse analysis of prejudice and moral exclusion in talk about Romanies. Journal of community and applied social Psychology 16: 19-41. Representing the ‘other’: A discourse analysis of prejudice and moral exclusion in talk about Romanies Journal of community and applied social Psychology 16 19 41 Google Scholar

Tileaga, Cristian. 2007. Ideologies of moral exclusion: A critical discursive reframing of depersonalization, delegitimization and dehumanization. British Journal of Social Psychology 46: 717-37. Ideologies of moral exclusion: A critical discursive reframing of depersonalization, delegitimization and dehumanization British Journal of Social Psychology 46 717 37 Google Scholar

Turner, Royce. 2002. Gypsies and British parliamentary language: An analysis. Romani Studies. Fifth series. 12: 1-34. Gypsies and British parliamentary language: An analysis. Romani Studies Fifth series 12 1 34 Google Scholar

Van Cleemput, Patrice. 2010. Social exclusion of Gypsies and Travellers: Health impact. Journal of Research in Nursing 15(4): 315-27. Social exclusion of Gypsies and Travellers: Health impact Journal of Research in Nursing 15 315 27 Google Scholar

van der Valk, Ineke. 2001. Political discourse on ethnic issues: A comparison of the right and the extreme right in the Netherlands and France (1990-1997). Ecprconference, 6-11 April 2001, Grenoble Political discourse on ethnic issues: A comparison of the right and the extreme right in the Netherlands and France (1990-1997) Ecprconference Google Scholar

van Dijk, Teun. 1992. Discourse and the denial of racism. Discourse & Society 3: 87-118. Discourse and the denial of racism Discourse & Society 3 87 118 Google Scholar

Verkuyten, Maykel. 2001. ‘Abnormalisation’ of ethnic minorities in conversation. British Journal of Social Psychology, 40: 257-78. ‘Abnormalisation’ of ethnic minorities in conversation British Journal of Social Psychology 40 257 78 Google Scholar

Wetherell, Margaret. 2003. Racism and the analysis of cultural resources in interviews. In Van den Berg, H., Wetherell, M., and Houtkoop-Steenstra, H., eds. Analyzing race talk: Multidisciplinary approaches to the interview. Cambridge; Cambridge University Press, 11-30. Analyzing race talk: Multidisciplinary approaches to the interview 11 30 Google Scholar

If you have private access to this content, please log in with your username and password here

Details

Author details

Rowe, Lottie

Goodman, Simon