thanks! My preliminary observations of various chat groups and respective discourse(s) confirm your sentiment re emergence of gender/sexuality issues from topics that touch on lockdown measures, mask wearing, vaccinations, “immunity through fitness”, “strength vs weakness” narratives, thought censorship + refutation of gender and/or ridicule of gender issues, evaluation of non-male elites, views on family etc.
This includes language being used, narratives being fed into, and disseminated icongraphy/visual content.
But we can certainly find ways to also add more focused gender/sexuality themes
@amelia, @Richard, @jitka.kralova
This is a nice repository of various ASR tools (I already shared the German tip with Djan), for Polish and Czech, they link only to the very limited google public services:(, but English seems to have a few interesting options (You should be able to log in via most Uni affiliations)
Dear all, this is a shortish summary of our back-end discussions regarding our respective fieldworks, and in general, populism.
Thoughts on populism:
We tuned in to an interview with Cas Mudde reg. the rise of populism in Netherlands (HERE), and more broadly, the world, and we also keep looking for various commentaries regarding populism. We in particular discussed the relationship between nativism and populism, with nativism being a thickening agent, encouraging populist policies. Populism is a top-down category, the people vs the elites, and populist outlets are not necessarily racist/xenophobic, while nativism is basically othering around a notion of the nation, “us” vs “outsiders”.
(Radical) right-wing populism fashioned by thickening thin populism with nativism (homogenous state, non-native elements are threat) and authoritarianism (belief in a strictly ordered society, “law and order”.
As dominant discourses tend to perceive populism as a right-wing phenomenon, we try to distance ourselves from such presumptions and listen to different understandings of populism, including grass-roots perception of its rise in Europe with an open approach. In that regard we attended an online discussion on the Dipesh Chakraborty’s book “Provincionalizing Europe” that was celebrating the anniversary of its publication. There was an interesting exchange of thought (recording here) on the post-colonial theory, with great comments from Ewa Domańska (UJ) and Achille Mbembe.
Tensions reg. minorities: Germany:https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2021/mar/10/germany-intelligence-agencies-rightwing-violence
One of the reasons could be re attacks:who to attack? 97% homogeneous society, Jewish population growing again, but extremely small. All attacks of the right are directed against ethnic/religious minorities here in Germany. Poland: from the outside it appears that the biggest threat of right/populists in Poland seem to be women/members of the LGBTQ community. Djan: „what reason should people have to use dangerous and unpopular methods to achieve goals, if they can achieve those goals through mainstream parties?“; Traditional Church(values),protection of nuclear family, somewhat nativist, … Isn’t that well represented/defended by PiS? Far right is very strong in Poland, but the extreme right isn’t Mania: I would agree with that, although it depends how we define the extreme right. The usual staff is somewhat in the mainstream, and the extremism here is often represented by extremely libertarian views and related conspiracy theories. Like those Twitter reactions to the OKO’s comment on the government’s plan to raise a tax free income from 7000 to 30000 as a part of the New Order (ha-ha) pandemic economic recovery plan.
Both accounts seem to be Russian trolls, but the narrative they spread is anti-German, like they’re saying, German’s won’t allow such economic solutions in Poland (?!), neither will Russians, and Poland’s a negro (murzyn) of both. Djan: Far-right, from Cas Mudde’s perspective, operates within the system, while the extreme right goes beyond the status-quo, and against it, with p.e. terrorist attacks.
"One year covid" celebration in czech as well. There were lots of attempts at protests and marches in different cities, but because we are in big trouble in terms of covid numbers in the hospitals, the police is repressing them quite strongly… so as an outcome, there is quite a strong villager-led ACAB movement emerging haha. And again, the people taking the streets are framing themselves very much outside of left and right spectrum, calling for the current gov. resignation, calling to the ‘rule of law’, comparing the situation to the former communist regime and of course all the covidspiracy narratives.
AstraZeneca controversies in Europe – discussing the consequences for the vaccine refusal rise - interesting that western countries in Europe, which are perceived as more risk averse (there are also some studies) have postponed giving Astra, while east European countries have not
Vaccine passes - creating more controversy, bringing in more divide. P.e. taking away fundamental rights is being commonly accepted, and justified in DE because of the pandemic, but those vaccinated might be “given” those rights back.
(Technocratic?) populist politics in Czech reg. the use of veterinary medication on humans, Jitka:" everyone is trying to find the magic cure for covid, its like a race for who is going to discover it, plus the populists are using it as part of their narrative that the eu and govs have conspired against people.
What’s been also a huge debate among the conspirators is this strong push for the meds like Isoprinosine, invermektin… has this been the same in Germany and Poland? someone from a right wing populist party on the radio just said: “we know very well that the polish are following the restrictions much less than the Czechs, but they have less deaths because they got Isoprinosine available in the pharmacy”. Yes in czech, the funny thing is that all the official health authorities said it shouldnt be sold or introduced because the medical evidence is so weak, but our populist prime minister jsut approved it a week ago because he saw that people on facebook were talking about it. Mania: There were some voices but the last years, now the discussion circulates around vaccinations mostly.
*Djan:*These are the off label meds that have not been widely approved but have been here and there used in experimental treatment settings in GER.
Ordo Juris and extreme conservatives in PolandMania: why othering narratives instead of positive inclusive narratives in social campaigns of the conveservatives, that somehow get picked up by PiS, with exception of very radical issues like banning divorces.
Masculinity and capitalism
*Mania:*Narratives, both textual and visual, of success vs failure, esp. in the times of C-19, come out in the online fieldwork in Poland, but such topics are also present in Czech (Jitka)
See: Undoing the Demos: Neoliberalism’s Stealth Revolution, W. Brown
Wondering how would you contextualize these two very different trends? How far can they reach from the spreaders & public figures or ministries who are leading the trends into the different populations?
Is there a way, in the ethnographic process to trace how these anti-vax fears and respectively, jumping the line, reach the minds of ‘lay people’ like the students in small towns, factory workers and others whom the team has been interviewed? Or is this a parallel analysis?
Ah, I forgot to add something for the Research themes described above, particularly:
** Community and family: family values, local sense of belonging, the strength of various social ties.*
** Covid crisis:*
Any ideas about how multigenerational housing in CE Europe, a cultural tradition, affects people’s ability to prevent covid, since the transmission risk is higher? Was looking at this and not surprisingly, extended families are at higher risk of covid transmission, so probably their behaviors towards risk and compliance would be slightly different?
In our take, this is more contextual, as we focus more on issues such reliance on the state, trust towards institutions, and interest in populist policies.
When it comes to anti-vaccination narratives, they are rather bottom-up, then the other way around.
I think multigenerational housing isn’t that popular in Poland anymore, geographical mobility within the country is very high. Yet, I would expect it more risky, but then it also can allow the elderly to stay at home while their family is taking care for them. What made you think about it?
Hm I see, well I saw that article and then I know that in our part of the world the burden of the elderly, especially those who are sick, is shouldered by the families who take them in, rather than the state - the car homes public or private system is nowhere near as in more developed countries, which means that if you are an informal caretaker or if your parent(s) lives with you, the way you deal with covid or feel about compliance is also shaped by that.
Anyhow, a sidenote if you will:-)