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Discourses of Disorder

Riots, Strikes and Protests in the Media

Edited by Christopher Hart, Darren Kelsey

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Analyses media representations of riots, strikes and protests

Riots, strikes and protests are heavily mediatised events. Media representations thus play a crucial role in narrating instances of civil disorder for the public where they define the issues at stake, delimit frames of reference and debate, and ultimately legitimise or delegitimise the actors, actions and causes involved. From a critical semiotic perspective, drawing on insights from linguistics, multimodality and media studies, this book explores the ideological dimensions of media representation and its function in discursively constructing public understandings of, and attitudes toward, civil disorder. A range of case studies are presented which cut across time, communicative modality and genre, and geo-political context.

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1. Political spin in early newspapers: Comparing narratives of the Baltimore Riots in June and July 1812

Juhani Rudanko

2. Moral storytelling during the 2011 England Riots: Mythology, metaphor and ideology

Darren Kelsey

3. Why do they protest? The discursive construction of ‘motives’ of the Chilean student movement (2011-2013) in the alternative press

Carolina Pérez-Arredondo

4. Crying children and bleeding pensioners against Rambo’s troop: Perspectivization in German newspaper reports on Stuttgart 21 Protests

Gerrit Kotzur

5. Taking a stance through the voice of ‘others’: Attribution in news coverage of a public sector workers’ strike in two Botswana newspapers

Boitshwarelo Rantsudu

6. Media ‘militant’ tendencies: How strike action in the news press is discursively constructed as inherently violent

Matt Davies and Rotsukhon Nophakhun


7. Metaphor and the Miners’ Strike: A multimodal analysis

Christopher Hart

8. Strategic manoeuvring in Arab Spring political cartoons

Rania El Nakkouzi

9. ‘Eu não mereço morrer assassinado’: On- and off-line protest by favela residents in Rio de Janeiro and mainstream media reactions to it: A multimodal approach

Andrea Mayr

10. Rioting and disorderly behaviour as political media practice

Serjoscha Ostermeyer and David Sittler

About the Author

Christopher Hart is Senior Lecturer in Linguistics at Lancaster University.

Darren Kelsey is Senior Lecturer and Head of Media, Culture, Heritage in the School of Arts and Cultures at Newcastle University

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