Date of Award
Master of Arts
Mass Communication and Media Arts
Within the framework of Critical Discourse Studies, this thesis looks at how Hazara peoples’ online activism during the Afghanistan 2009 and 2014 Presidential Elections contributed to promoting civil society and democratic values in Post-2001Afghanistan. The data corpus for this research is a selection of twelve published articles from the four most popular Hazara activists’ affiliated websites: The Republic of Silence, Hazara People International Network, Kabul Press and Hazara Net. Hazara writers applied a critical, but divisive and ethnocentric language to construct a political discourse during the Afghan national elections and polarized Afghan ethnic groups and differentiated between people and politicians. Despite the divisive and polarized discourse strategies in their texts, Hazara writers opened a fresh space for ethnic conversation in the Afghan online public sphere during the elections and enriched Afghan mainstream media discourse. The data corpus unveiled political activism based on historical consciousness, collective adaptability to social changes, and a continuous interest in education and civic activism as main Hazara online themes in post-2001 Afghanistan. These Hazara texts promote one role in particular for Hazaras, and that is to protest yesterday’s oppressive history, correct today's political structures and transform tomorrow's political culture in Afghanistan, so that all activists share something more than race, blood and ethnicity.
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