Ellis, Oliver

Oliver Ellis
Start date:
October 2015
Research Topic:
Investigating the mobilisation of national identity in the digital age: Comparing the digital practices of nationalist movements
Research pathway:
Research Supervisor:
Prof William Housley and Adam Edwards
Supervising school:
School of Social Sciences,
Primary funding source:
ESRC Studentship

In recent times the persistence of nationalist politics has been evident across Europe – of both stateless nations, e.g. Scotland, Catalonia, and of nation-states, e.g. Front National in France or UKIP in Britain. With the emergence of digital media networks provoking accounts of the enhanced agency of political actors and movements, this research will look to map the field of digital activity of nationalist movements situated in the UK. It will explore the structure and organisation of nationalist, but also broader civic, networks in the emerging digital public spaces of social media, the prominent modes and methods of social media usage by actors as well as prominent nationalist discourses and counter-discourses deployed and contested in these spaces. However, this will also be supplemented by investigating how such online activity is situated within broader offline strategies. This will involve conducting various event-based case studies, with the EU referendum anticipated as a prominent case where national identities are to be mobilised.