This research employs Critical Discourse Analysis (CDA) in order to explore discourse and power relations present within policy documents surrounding refugee education in Uganda. The research finds that the international scale has control over educational discourse in Ugandan refugee education policy. This research shows that colonial relationships are still present through current aid relationships, meaning powerful states and organisations sustain and reproduce power relations.
The discussion builds on relationships between ‘developing’ and ‘developed’ countries and the ways in which these relationships function within processes of globalisation. How do processes of aid, international policy making and the formation of powerful ‘international’ organisations, function to ensure refugees are provided with education. Fundamental to these complex relationships and this paper is education as a human right, which is enshrined within the ‘Universal Declaration of Human rights’ (1948).
The study primarily focuses on language, and how language is employed to sustain power relations and ideologies within the ‘global’ society. This is done by combining CDA with a multi-scalar approach to select a policy from each scale: the international; the national; and the local. These policies are then analysed using Fairclough’s (1989) Dialectical-relational approach to CDA, to understand how discourse on refugee education is translated from the international scale to the national and local scale of Uganda.