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The Covid-19 pandemic and the emergence of anti-lockdown sentiments

Crises in Digital Spaces: The Covid-19 pandemic and the emergence of anti-lockdown identities, emotions, cognitions, and motivations

The Anti-Corona project views anti-lockdown protests as part of the rise of radical right-wing discourses and protests such as the recent Capitol riots in the US in January 2021.

It proposes a novel perspective in understanding online anti-publics, studying the broader narrative, expression and visual representation of a recent and popularised political mobilisation, with an aim to understand the social factors including marginalisation, ontological discomfort and moral outrage intertwined with online drivers that turn grievance and alienation into right-wing activism.

Evidence from social psychology and cognitive sciences bolster studies in the online expression on social media platforms, as these disciplines suggest that people have underlying motivations, beliefs and intuitions driving their preferences and decisions, which, in turn, feed their online self-presentation.

The project investigates how social groups can shape radicalisation of individuals and enforce shared group norms, beliefs, and stereotypes and how these social groups expose their unifying ideologies on online platforms and in public spaces. We hypothesise that ontological comfort moralises prudential concerns. Anti-lockdown protesters are morally outraged by the lockdown imposed on them. Anti-Corona investigates to what extent moralising ontological comfort and marginalisation can be considered moral, as it infringes on the freedoms and health precautions of others. To investigate ontological discomfort, social exclusion and marginalisation, the Anti-Corona project produces a solid empirical base using digital, visual, and survey methodologies.


Meet the Principal Investigator(s) for the project

Dr Ozge Ozduzen
Dr Nelli Ferenczi
Dr Nelli Ferenczi - I am a Lecturer in Psychology. As a cross-cultural social psychologist, I am interested in applying a cultural lens to identity, our close relationships, and how we engage with others. My main research interests are currently centred in three areas: cross-cultural psychology, bicultural identity, and engagement with social media. Please see my Research section for more information, or contact me with your ideas and proposals: as an interdisciplinary researcher I am always open to discussions of novel research ideas within the general theme of culture and its intersection with social psychology.

Related Research Group(s)

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Global Lives - Research conducted in the Centre addresses the challenges facing society, helping to change the lives of people around the world by bringing economic, social and cultural benefits.

Partnering with confidence

Organisations interested in our research can partner with us with confidence backed by an external and independent benchmark: The Knowledge Exchange Framework. Read more.

Project last modified 11/06/2021