We are delighted to announce that Dr Elizabeth Poole (PI) and Dr Eva Giraud (CO-I) have been awarded £9,357 by the British Academy, with Dr Ed De Quincey in Computer Science, to conduct a project entitled ‘Who speaks for Muslims? Political frictions and the politics of appropriation in social media’.
“There is now enough evidence to state that Muslim minorities are predominantly represented in a negative light in, or excluded from, significant mainstream media of many ‘Western’ countries. Though social media has provided a space of self- representation for various minority groups seeking to redress this balance, and for groups engaged in social justice activism, its use has been contentious. Moving away from a binary that positions this ‘new’ media as either democratising or an extension of structural inequalities, this project explores the frictions (tensions) that can occur in these technological spaces when they are used for constructing critical counter-narratives. Through an analysis of the #StopIslam campaign on Twitter, following the Brussels terror attacks of March 2016, the research will show how the initially negative attack on Muslims was transformed into a defence. The project will ask ‘Who speaks for Muslims?’ Who appropriated this discourse and were Muslims able to represent themselves?”
The 14-month award will commence in January 2017.
Big congratulations to Liz, Eva & Ed on the award!