Deterring the ‘Boat People’: Explaining the Australian Government's People Swap Response to Asylum Seekers

Australian Journal of Political Science 48(4): 417-430

14 Pages Posted: 9 Apr 2013 Last revised: 12 Dec 2013

Jaffa McKenzie

University of Melbourne

Reza Hasmath

University of Alberta - Department of Political Science

Date Written: 2013

Abstract

This article examines why Australia has taken a tough stance on ‘boat people’, through an analysis of the Malaysian People Swap response. The findings support the view that Australia’s asylum seeker policy agenda is driven by populism, wedge politics and a culture of control. The article further argues that these political pressures, in sum, hold numerous negative implications for the tone of Australia’s political debate, the quality of policy formulation, as well as for asylum seekers and refugees themselves.

Keywords: Australia, asylum seekers, People Swap

Suggested Citation

McKenzie, Jaffa and Hasmath, Reza, Deterring the ‘Boat People’: Explaining the Australian Government's People Swap Response to Asylum Seekers (2013). Australian Journal of Political Science 48(4): 417-430. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2247142 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2247142

Jaffa McKenzie

University of Melbourne ( email )

185 Pelham Street, Carlton, Victoria 3053
Melbourne, Victoria 3010
Australia

Reza Hasmath (Contact Author)

University of Alberta - Department of Political Science ( email )

10-16 Henry Marshall Tory Building
Edmonton, Alberta T6G 2H4
Canada

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