Twitter use by politicians during social uprisings an analysis of Gezi park protests in Turkey

Yavuz, Nilay
Social uprisings clearly show that social media tools, especially Twitter, help news spread more than the press does recently. In some cases Twitter substitutes traditional media if censorship is enlarged to such a level that the mainstream media channels prefer not to reflect the actual volume of the protests. Twitter is also utilized by politicians during such events to reinforce "us vs. them" division, and to gain support and legitimization for their own actions. Using critical discourse analysis, this paper aims to investigate the recurring speech patterns in the tweets of top-level politicians during the Gezi Park protests that started in Istanbul Turkey in June 2013 and spread the country rapidly. We study the tweets to draw conclusions on whether the politicians' statements represent marginalization and polarization efforts during the Gezi Park protests. In this paper, we consider social uprising as a communal expression of both political and apolitical opposition to the party in power. Our analysis reveals that the politicians' tweets are mainly characterized by a discourse that guides the public into some conscious direction that may reproduce marginalization and polarization among the public at large.


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Citation Formats
N. KARKIN, N. Yavuz, İ. PARLAK, and Ö. Ö. İKİZ, “Twitter use by politicians during social uprisings an analysis of Gezi park protests in Turkey,” 2015, Accessed: 00, 2020. [Online]. Available: