The Resonant Chants of Networked Discourse: Affective Publics and the Muslim Self in Turkey
This study draws on a specific hashtag campaign (#AliErbaşYalnızDeğildir), a concerted activity of tweeting supporting the chair of the Directorate of Religious Affairs in Turkey Ali Erbaş, who had criticized sexual practices outside of monogamous, heterosexual marriage. I read the archives of tweets as a performative site for imagining a Muslim self that forms affective publics. This research is built on two complementary layers of analysis. First, I dissect the thematic patterns of the top tweets including the above hashtag and identify three thematic patterns. Second, I scrutinize affective resonances by examining the circulation of the tweets in question. Viewing through this lens, the present study argues that networked discourse is a dynamic site for drawing the symbolic boundaries of Muslim identity. To have a deeper understanding of this dynamism, this study calls us to pay close attention to affective resonances, as they can provide the potential for negotiating networked discourse.