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Apocalypse on the net

Extreme Threat and the Majority-Minority Relationship on the Romanian Internet

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Adela Fofiu

The apocalypse can bring upon the world either termination, either change. By exploring how emotions, ethnic or national belonging and digital technologies work together in constructing an apocalypticizing national self, this book offers a complex analysis of far rightist apocalyptic narratives. Content analysis performed on the blog of the New Right, a far rightist organization from Romania, unveils a fascinating imaginary of fear and hate toward otherness, of strong beliefs that the world, our world, is ending through its transformation into something else – something that we know and, at the same time, do not know and loath. The social psychology of emotions, belonging and identity, the sociology of globalization and studies on cyberhate are intertwined into the exploration and interpretation of on-line apocalyptic narratives that imagine the Gypsification and Hungarization of Romania and the Islamization of Europe as irreversible change.

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Chapter 4: The New Right cyberhate strategies

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97 Chapter 4 The New Right cyberhate strategies In the present chapter, the vast and consistent data from the New Right blog is structured in an analysis of cyberhate textual, visual, emotional, and interactional strategies. These strategies work together in constructing a dying world, an imaginary of disappearance and loss which nurtures itself to a nearly paroxysmal point. It is not my intent in here to verify the truthfulness of the New Right on-line speech, nor to defuse its logics. Rather, my aim is to explore the dynamics of 'what if?', in a world where uncertainties and anxiety seem to be the underlying norms. Understanding the work of cyberhate involves attaining a degree of knowledge about the way it functions and the way it is constructed. Since visual and textual cues are the first prominent when contact is established between producers and audiences, I rest in the following pages on the textual strategies and the visual strategies that the New Right uses, not forgetting though that an us-them dynamic always involves politics of emotions. The notion of strategy involves actions and goals that need to be performed and attained in the most optimal manner (van Dijk and Kintsch, 1983). In theorizing discourses, van Dijk and Kintsch develop a conceptual schema that relates to the intentionality of texts. In their view, the contexts of the strategies determine their typology: sociocultural, interactional or rhetorical, to name a few (van Dijk and Kintsch, 1983). A cultural and social strategy implies that the...

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