Historical politics in newspaper reporting
Media representations of football supporters’ commemoration activism
Historical politics is usually an institutionalised top-down phenomenon, in which the government or the cultural elites selectively formulate a historical narrative to unify and homogenize the imagined nation-state. Yet, there are also grassroots movements in the public sphere, which participate in the uses and abuses of history for identity politics. We focus on one such case: the football supporters’ commemoration activism. While football supporters’ social activism and the role of football matches as lieux de mémoire have received significant scholarly interest, their commemoration activism is as yet poorly described. In this paper we investigate how two regional newspapers of differing political position report this issue. The DHA-inspired qualitative analysis shows that Gazeta Wyborcza writes about it relatively rarely and views it as an appropriation of collective memory. Głos Wielkopolski on the other hand constructs football supporters as a rejuvenating force in local identity and memory politics.
Keywords: commemoration activism, football supporters, social activism, collective memory, newspaper analysis, DHA
- 2.Social activism
- 3.Memory games
- 4.The socio-historical context of the study
- 5.Press representation of the commemoration activism of football supporters
- 5.1Representation of Lech Poznań supporters memory activism by Głos Wlkp
- 5.2Representation of Lech Poznań supporters memory activism by Gazeta Wyborcza
- 6.Discussion and conclusions
Published online: 28 January 2019
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