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A Head-On Look: Female Claim-Making as Discursive Activism in Contemporary Chinese Cyberspace
« The number of Chinese netizens has surpassed 904 million in 2020, and 49% out of whom are women (CNNIC, 2020). Since its creation in the 1990s, Chinese cyberspace has been a vibrant sphere of civil action (Herold and Marolt, 2011). Under state authoritarianism, the Chinese cyberspace stands on the margin of normality, as a carnivalesque place of dissent (ibid.). Making up almost half of the entire netizen population, women are known to be key actors of cyberspace activism. This dissertation sets out to investigate female claim-making in Chinese cyberspace. It is particularly interested in the notion of citizenship that underpins their claims. Female fans of a cyber-entertainment reality show are examined as a case study, using feminist critical discourse analysis (FCDA) as the methodology. Their claims are analysed against the analytical framework of feminist discursive activism to see if it can challenge dominant patriarchal discourses and advances citizenship consciousness. This dissertation finds that female fans’ claim-making constitute discursive activism that is essentially a politics of visibility, which resonates with the notion of performative citizenship.

Shared with the World by Elangkathir Duhindan

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