Paper Type

Master's Thesis


College of Arts and Sciences

Degree Name

Master of Arts in International Affairs (MAIA)


Political Science & Public Administration

NACO controlled Corporate Body

University of North Florida. Department of Political Science and Public Administration

First Advisor

Dr. E. Kyle Romero

Second Advisor

Dr. Pamela Zeiser

Department Chair

Dr. Nicholas Seabrook

College Dean

Dr. Kaveri Subrahmanyam


Xenophobia has oscillated in intensity in the United States, Canada, and Western Europe since the late eighteenth century. This pattern of fear of immigrants and refugees being harbingers of violence and criminal activity establishes itself throughout the modern history of the United States, Canada, and Western Europe despite much evidence to the contrary. In the twentieth century, the prevailing argument surrounding the creation of xenophobia centered around economics. This divergence from twenty-first century patterns can be attributed to the Global War on Terror increasing alienation of refugees and immigrants through mythmaking and the structural securitization of immigration in the United States, Canada, and Western Europe. In these states, xenophobia, particularly Islamophobia, has continued to rise among both governments and individuals since September 11th through the misuse of popular culture, security rationalization, and the making of terrorism into a unified enemy. This paper will look primarily at the effects of the unintended consequences of the Global War on Terror increasing xenophobia and Islamophobia on U.S., Canadian, and European refugee policy.