From Counterpublics to Contentious Publicness: Tracing the Temporal, Spatial, and Material Articulations of Popular Protest Through Social Media

Kavada, Anastasia and Poell, Thomas 2021. From Counterpublics to Contentious Publicness: Tracing the Temporal, Spatial, and Material Articulations of Popular Protest Through Social Media. Communication Theory. 31 (2), pp. 190-208. https://doi.org/10.1093/ct/qtaa025

TitleFrom Counterpublics to Contentious Publicness: Tracing the Temporal, Spatial, and Material Articulations of Popular Protest Through Social Media
TypeJournal article
AuthorsKavada, Anastasia and Poell, Thomas
AbstractAbstract This article presents a new approach to the study of public contestation through social media. Developing this approach, we make three conceptual moves. First, to capture the dynamic character of contemporary contestation, we shift attention from publics to publicness as an interactive process. Second, we turn the focus from the “counter,” as a public or space distinct from the dominant sphere, towards distributed forms of contention. Finally, instead of considering media as arenas of claims, we investigate how media are constitutive of contentious publicness, which can be studied along its material, spatial, and temporal dimensions. These moves lead to an analytical framework through which trajectories of contentious publicness can be systematically traced and evaluated. Through case studies on the 2011 Egyptian uprising and the Occupy protests, we demonstrate how this framework can be employed to examine the construction of new contentious actors and evaluate their democratic legitimacy as claim-makers.
KeywordsLinguistics and Language
Communication
Language and Linguistics
JournalCommunication Theory
Journal citation31 (2), pp. 190-208
ISSN1050-3293
1468-2885
Year2021
PublisherOxford University Press
Accepted author manuscript
File Access Level
Open (open metadata and files)
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)https://doi.org/10.1093/ct/qtaa025
Web address (URL)https://academic.oup.com/ct/advance-article/doi/10.1093/ct/qtaa025/5937242
Publication dates
Published online23 Oct 2020
Published in printMay 2020
Licensehttps://academic.oup.com/journals/pages/open_access/funder_policies/chorus/standard_publication_model

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