“#Iftheygunnedmedown”: how twitter activists sought justice for Michael Brown
LE3 .A278 2018
Bachelor of Arts
This thesis argues that social media has become an effective tool that can be mobilized by social movements to express discontent with the status quo and ultimately to change this status quo. As such, the main objective of this thesis is to understand the role that social media platforms such as Twitter have had in challenging hegemonic discourses within society, as well as in producing counter-hegemonic discourses. In order to explore this phenomenon, this thesis examines the case of Michael Brown and the subsequent Ferguson protests as they were presented within traditional media messages. This is done to discover whether or not users on social media were able to influence the narrative surrounding these events. A Critical Discourse Analysis conducted of traditional media articles written at the time of the incident points to a shift in the way the events were framed.
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