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Title: The Asylum Speaker
Subtitle: Language in the Belgian Asylum Procedure
Written By: Katrijn Maryns
Series Title: Encounters
Description:

Drawing on first-hand ethnographic data, field interviews with
interpreters, interviewers and decision-makers, observations and off-record
comments, The Asylum Speaker examines discursive processes in the asylum
procedure and the impact these processes may have on the determination of
refugee status. The book starts from the assumption that far-reaching legal
decisions often have to be made on very limited grounds. Unable to submit
any evidence to substantiate their case, the only chance that many asylum
seekers have is to argue their case during the oral hearings with public
officials at the different asylum agencies.

Maryns investigates the performance of the asylum seeker during these
interviews and analyzes the relationship between narrative structuring and
gradations of linguistic competence. She explores a number of related
questions: first, how the interaction between applicants and public
officials proceeds; second, how this interaction forms the discursive input
into long and complicated textual trajectories, and third, how the outcome
of these discursive processes affects the assessment of asylum applications.

Maryns demonstrates how propositional aspects play a crucial role in the
asylum procedure whereas little attention is paid to narrative-linguistic
diversity and multilingual speaker repertoires. Her analysis reveals how
insufficient insight into the linguistic structure and narrative features
of the asylum account often results in a deficient processing of important
details.

Publication Year: 2006
Publisher: St. Jerome Publishing Ltd
Review: Not available for review. If you would like to review a book on The LINGUIST List, please login to view the AFR list.
BibTex: View BibTex record
Linguistic Field(s): Pragmatics
Subject Language(s): None
Issue: All announcements sent out by The LINGUIST List are emailed to our subscribers and archived with the Library of Congress.
Click here to see the original emailed issue.

Versions:
Format: Paperback
ISBN: 1900650894
ISBN-13: N/A
Pages: 386
Prices: U.K. £ 19.99