Perkins, Keighley

Perkins,  Keighley
Start date:
October 2019
Research Topic:
Visual Extremism Online: A Discursive News Values Analysis of Social Media Images from Radical Right Groups
Research pathway:
Research Supervisor:
Professor Nuria Lorenzo-Dus
Supervising school:
Language Research Centre,
Primary funding source:
ESRC Wales DTP Studentship

Working with law enforcement, this PhD will investigate the images used by radical right-wing groups on social media.

Platforms, such as Facebook and Twitter, have proved to be valuable tools for radical right-wing groups in that they provide access to vast audiences for little cost and minimal risk. As such, social media platforms can now be described as ā€œthe weapon of choice for extremist propagandistsā€ (Luckert, 2017).

In particular, images are an effective means of persuasion for radical right-wing groups as they are easier to for audiences to process and, therefore, remember (Sternberg, 2006; Messaris and Abraham, 2001). Additionally, images transcend language barriers (Kovacs, 2015) and have a lasting emotive impact on audiences (Zelizer, 2010), making them transferrable across different contexts.

This project will, therefore, build on a relatively under-explored area by identifying the linguistic and visual strategies that radical right-wing groups use to communicate their ideologies and radicalise new members.