Genre and Identity in Social Media

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter (peer-reviewed)

Colleges, School and Institutes

Abstract

This chapter examines how identities are constructed in social media, particularly, in the blog, and how a variety of genres are used by the blogger to shape a range of identities. The blog helps the blogger to establish a contract between her and her audiences, and, in turn, to reach out to specific communities of followers. The focus of my case study is a blog that has been written in Russian by the Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny, who has kept his blog on the LiveJournal website at http://navalny-en.livejournal.com/ since 2006. My analysis is informed by the understanding of genre as social action (Miller, 1984) and a discursive conception of identity (Butler, 1990; Fairclough, 2003; Hall, 1990, 1992, 1996). To examine the blog as a multimodal text, I apply Kress’s (2010) social semiotic approach to communication (p. 26). I also draw on van Leeuwen’s (2008) understanding of discourse as the recontextualization of social practice, which allows me to examine how identity is constantly recontextualized—or re-shaped through the use of genre—in response to changing contexts.

Details

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationGenre Studies around the Globe
Subtitle of host publicationBeyond the Three Traditions
Publication statusPublished - 14 Mar 2016

Keywords

  • genre, identity, social media, blog