Updates, commentary, training and advice on immigration and asylum law

Displaying genuineness: cultural translation in the drafting of marriage narratives for immigration applications and appeals by Natasha Carver


Older content is locked

A great deal of time and effort goes into producing the information on Free Movement, become a member of Free Movement to get unlimited access to all articles, and much, much more


By becoming a member of Free Movement, you not only support the hard-work that goes into maintaining the website, but get access to premium features;

  • Single login for personal use
  • FREE downloads of Free Movement ebooks
  • Access to all Free Movement blog content
  • Access to all our online training materials
  • Access to our busy forums
  • Downloadable CPD certificates

Displaying genuineness: cultural translation in the drafting of marriage narratives for immigration applications and appeals by Natasha Carver is available for free during March. This is the abstract:

This article uses Finch’s (2007) idea of ‘display’ to analyse the process in which autobiographical statements for family immigration applications and appeals are drafted in the United Kingdom. I argue that legal representatives play a key role in ‘translating culture’ (Good, 2011) in relation to both content and form, a process that is driven primarily by the need to demonstrate compatibility with the cultural assumptions of ethnocentrically conceived Immigration Rules. These rules act as ‘moral gatekeepers’ (Wray, 2006) to set limits on the conceptual structure of ‘family’ and to outline what a ‘genuine’ marital relationship looks like, thereby excluding cultural Others. The findings show that legal representatives translate the experiences, norms and values of their clients’ relationships using authorial devices to make the account ring true within a commonsense understanding of British culture. I suggest that legal representatives thus contribute to a successful outcome for those lacking in cultural capital.

It was the basis for this earlier blog post by Natasha. And while on the subject, this issue of genuine relationships is also becoming a hot issue in Canada.

Relevant articles chosen for you
Picture of Colin Yeo

Colin Yeo

Immigration and asylum barrister, blogger, writer and consultant at Garden Court Chambers in London and founder of the Free Movement immigration law website.