Social Media as a Battlefield between Competing Discourses: Analysis of the Case of Anti-Corruption Protests in Russia at the Micro-Level (2017-2019)
March 2017 was marked by the most intense protest actions in Russia since 2011 – 2012. Sparked by the documentary film “He is not Dimon to You,” the Anti-corruption protests attracted more than 60 thousand people in major Russian cities. They were noticeable for their scope, emergence of new narratives and extensive social media usage (Facebook in particular). This research project focuses on the interaction between anti- and pro-government discourses during the protests of 2017 – 2019 in Russia, that led to a specific configuration of the political discourse. Within this study I use Laclau’s and Mouffe’s discourse theory to analyze discursive strategies used by the protesters in social media to mobilize supporters, conduct negotiations and oppose adversaries. Overall, this project contributes to the growing volume of texts considering how new types of social media influence the structure and discourse of protest movements in Eastern Europe.
Main Research Topics
- Social media
- Anti-corruption movement
- discourse theory
- Russian inner policy
- 09/2019–02/2020: Visiting researcher, Swedish Institute Visby Programme for Postdoctoral Research at the Uppsala Institute for Russian and Eurasian Studies (IRES) at The Uppsala University, Sweden.
- 02/2019–06/2019: Researcher, Johan Skytte Institute of Political Studies at Tartu University, Estonia.
- 03/2018–01/2019: Visiting research fellow, Global Dialogue Fellowship Program at Faculty “Artes Liberales” at University of Warsaw, Poland.
- 09/2017–02/2018: Visiting researcher, Swedish Institute Visby Programme for Postdoctoral Research at the Uppsala Centre for Russian and Eurasian Studies (UCRS) at The Uppsala University, Sweden.
- 10/2016–06/2017: Visiting researcher, DAAD Programme for Young Scientists at the Research Centre for East European Studies at the University of Bremen, Germany.
Lectures and Publications
- Navumau, Vasil. (2016). The Belarusian Maidan: A New Social Movement Approach to the Tent Camp Protest in Minsk,” 2006. Kurczewska, J. & Shibata, Y. (eds). Frankfurt am Main, Berlin, Bern, Bruxelles, New York, Oxford, Wien: Peter Lang. 260 pp.
- Navumau, Vasil. (submitted). Integration or Absorption? Analysis of the Propagandist Narratives about Belarus in the Russian Media, Demokratizatsiya.
- Navumau, Vasil. (accepted). Developing the Methodology for the the Russian “For Fair Elections” Protest (2011-2012). Debaty Artes Liberales
- Navumau, Vasil. (2019). Social Media as Source of Counter- Hegemonic Discourses. Analysis of the Belarusian Protest Movement “Silent Actions” (2010-2011) at the Micro-Level, Demokratizatsiya, 27 (3).
- Astapova, Anastasiya & Navumau, Vasil. (2018). Veyshnoria: A Fake Country in the Midst of Real Information Warfare, Journal of American Folklore, Vol. 131, No. 522 (Fall 2018), pp. 435-443
- Navumau, Vasil. (2016). Politische Proteste in Belarus im Jahr 2016, Belarus Analysen, FSO, Nr29, pp.6-10
- Naumov, Vasil. (2014). Social Activism in Post-Communist Countries and New Media: the Case of the Tent Camp. In Polish Sociological Review, 3 (187).