• Relationships between media logics
and discourses around crime and terrorism,
• “Fake News,” [social] media and
• Discourses of fear and
constructions of Self and Other
• The Self is a relational concept-
it is always in opposition to or in relation to the Other. Inside/Outside,
• The Other is feared, and that
which we fear is also Othered
• Security politics are actually
instrumental to the creation and maintenance of state identity (Campbell 1998)
• The state actually relies on
security politics and a narrative of threat in order to solidify its legitimacy
and continued existence
• Over-representation of violence
and violent crime in the media. Implications?
– Increases pervasive sense of fear
– Links ideas and subjects together
in particular ways. Examples?
• Violent ßà Crime; Muslim ßà Terrorist; Gangsßà African Americans etc.
– Framing and representation. The
media tells us what to pay attention to and what not to pay attention to.
• Both perpetrator and victim in
news stories are informed by “perceived membership”
– In-group= victim/ out-group=
– We other those that we fear and
fear those that we other
– Serves a dual purpose:
• 1) Establishing a “group sense” of
the boundaries of the “us” group
• 2) Through this, create a shared
sense of unease and fear around the (threatening) “other”
• So we construct our identity
partially on the basis of a shared fear of those who are “not like us”. Why is
– How would fear of “others” and/or
crime and/or terrorism contribute to social control?
• We are becoming more armoured;
• We rely more and more on policing
and security structures to police “us” against “them,” so much so that we don’t
realize that these same apparatuses and mechanisms are also policing us.
• We begin to freely give up our
civil liberties to surveillance and enforcement agents.
• Back to Schmitt: The Sovereign =
– Decides when “exceptions” to law
– Decides who is protected,
disciplined, punished, exiled or killed – ULTIMATELY then, sovereign power
decides who is IN and who is OUT
• Altheide – the mass media operates
as a social institution because it is a “critical carrier and definer of
– Mass media formats wield enormous
social power (i.e. the capacity to define a situation for oneself or others).
• Homophily- leads to political
diversity or polarization?
• (Social) Media- Echo chamber or
• Conscious manufacturing of
opinions- “Fake News?
The post “Fake News,” the Media, and constructions of Otherness
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