10 May 2019: Narrating the EU Refugee/Migration ‘Crisis’: The Case of Hungary and Slovakia


Leiden University’s Central and East European Studies Center cordially invites you to attend the lecture

Narrating the EU Refugee/Migration ‘Crisis’: The Case of Hungary and Slovakia

by Beatrix Futák-Campbell (Leiden University) and Katarina Jakubčeková (Slovakian Embassy in The Hague)

Focus on domestic insecurities

Beatrix Futák-Campbell and Katarina Jakubčeková scrutinize the process through which the political narratives in Hungary and Slovakia securitized refugees during the height of the EU’s migration ‘crisis’, the way they portray the refugees/migrants as a security threat and how these narratives intersect with EU discourse and practice. They demonstrate how the competing logics of securitisation and humanitarianism were deployed during the ‘crisis’ but used reversely by the Hungarian and Slovakian governments to achieve domestic political gains. Their findings show that both prime ministers focus on the insecurities such as economic insecurity before directing their attention to civilizational threats or the threats that migrants/refugees would (supposedly) pose to the cultures of the respective societies, as well as the physical threats they would (allegedly) create though, inter alia, ‘terrorist’ activities. Their intention is to protect the economic, societal, community and human security of Hungarians and Slovaks while ignoring the human insecurity of migrants (reverse humanitarianism), which may be considerably more pressing and contradict EU policy (still humanitarianist), and thus question EU order and governance.

About the speakers

Beatrix Futák-Campbell is Assistant Professor of International Relations at Leiden University College The Hague, where she is also the convener of the World Politics major. She completed her PhD in International Relations at the University of St. Andrews. Her first monograph just been published by Manchester University Press titled Practising EU foreign policy: Russia and the eastern neighbours. She is currently finishing her second monograph Theories and Methods in International Relations (Palgrave). During the 2017/18 academic year she was working as principal investigator at the Netherlands Institute for Advanced Study (NIAS-KNAW) for a project on Reading and Narrating the EU Migration/Refugee Crisis.

Miss Katarina Jakubčeková is currently an economic, commercial and policy advisor at the Slovakian Embassy in The Hague. She completed her BA in World Politics at Leiden University College in 2017, and she will begin her Master degree in International Relations at the College of Europe in the autumn of 2019. Her piece on EU Foreign Policy towards Brazil was published in the second issue of Security and Global Affairs journal.