Narrative mediation of the Occupy movement: a case study of Stockholm and Latvia

Maria Francesca Murru, Anne Kaun

Risultato della ricerca: Contributo in libroChapter

Abstract

The latest waves of protests that emerged in the context of the Euro crisis have spurred the question of how the practices of activists intersect with (online) media usage. Economic crises are here considered as critical junctures not only in terms of the economic system as such, but also for the media system as protest movements employing different media technologies aim fill the crisis-induced void with new meaning giving social change a specific direction (Koselleck, 1973/1959). In the context of the 2008 financial crisis and the subsequent protests, social media were particularly emphazised by commentators. Suggestions such as networks of protests (Castells, 2012) and the connective action (Bennett and Segerberg, 2013) paradigm have been prevalent in the discussion. While both notions have certainly value for understanding certain aspects of digital activism, their exclusive focus on the new organizational structures that are expected to result from digital-enabled peer production mechanisms, risks to neglect other dimensions of digital networks that are equally important in contentious action in the context of economic crises. The aim of this contribution is to bring into light an overlooked dimension of digital networks in contentious actions that consists in their intrinsic connection to narratives of protest. Using two case studies based respectively in Latvia (Occupy Latvia that was mainly active on social networking sites in 2011/2012) and in Sweden (Occupy Stockholm that was active roughly between October 2011 and July 2012), the chapter advocates a narrative approach to the study of anti-austerity movements. Considering particularly different identities produced in and by protest movements’ narratives and represented by the two case studies, the chapter suggests that a focus on narratives allows to consider both lived experiences and material conditions of the movements' evolution. This allows for a more thorough understanding of the Euro crisis.
Lingua originaleEnglish
Titolo della pubblicazione ospiteThe media and austerity
EditorSteve Schifferes, Sophie Knowles Laura Basu
Pagine226-236
Numero di pagine11
Stato di pubblicazionePubblicato - 2018

Keywords

  • Narratives
  • social media
  • social movements

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