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Self-representations on social media: Reproducing and challenging discourses on disability
University of Helsinki, Helsinki, Finland. (DISLIFE, DISMAW)ORCID iD: 0000-0001-7058-9955
Umeå University, Faculty of Arts, Department of culture and media studies. (DISLIFE, DISMAW)ORCID iD: 0000-0001-6671-4514
2020 (English)In: Alter;European Journal of Disability Research ;Journal Europeen de Recherche Sur le Handicap, ISSN 1875-0672, E-ISSN 1875-0680, Vol. 14, no 2, p. 71-84Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

This article examines self-representations in a social media campaign against the discrimination of people with disabilities. We focus specifically on how these representations are related to various narratives and discourses, and in what ways the representations either adhere to or challenge normative discourses, or whether they offer counter-discourses. Considering that our cultural assumptions are influenced by the representations we are exposed to, we also discuss the possible potential of self-representations for the audience of the campaign. The empirical material consists of a digital activism campaign conducted on Instagram in Sweden that was constructed through self-representations (photos and short texts). The study combines discourse analysis and visual analysis with focus on how the persons present themselves in the campaign, how disability is mentioned and/or displayed, and how a presentation adheres to or challenges a model of understanding disability, such as the medical or social models. We found a diverse set of claims, all with the common goal of acknowledging discrimination, in order to make it visible and bring about change. The narratives identified indicate a variety of strategies for understanding disability and various styles that people adopt to relate to established discourses on disabilities. Through this campaign, the bloggers could find and provide support, but they also took the stage by requesting that the audience listen. The campaign examined in this study can be further understood as an effort and a step towards increased visibility and politicization of disability.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Elsevier, 2020. Vol. 14, no 2, p. 71-84
Keywords [en]
Disability Studies, Minority Studies
National Category
Cultural Studies
Research subject
digital humanities; media and communication studies
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-170300DOI: 10.1016/j.alter.2020.02.001ISI: 000530897800001Scopus ID: 2-s2.0-85082433597OAI: oai:DiVA.org:umu-170300DiVA, id: diva2:1427702
Projects
DISMAW (2012.0141)
Part of project
Liveable disabilities: Life courses and opportunity structures across time, Europeiska unionen – Horizon 2020
Funder
EU, Horizon 2020, 647125Marcus and Amalia Wallenberg Foundation, 2012.0141Available from: 2020-04-30 Created: 2020-04-30 Last updated: 2023-03-24Bibliographically approved

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Ljuslinder, Karin

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CiteExportLink to record
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Citation style
  • apa
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  • modern-language-association-8th-edition
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Output format
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