Editor's Choice Articles

Editor’s Choice articles are based on recommendations by the scientific editors of MDPI journals from around the world. Editors select a small number of articles recently published in the journal that they believe will be particularly interesting to authors, or important in this field. The aim is to provide a snapshot of some of the most exciting work published in the various research areas of the journal.

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Article
Cultural Identity in Bicultural Young Adults in Ireland: A Social Representation Theory Approach
Soc. Sci. 2022, 11(6), 230; https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci11060230 - 24 May 2022
Viewed by 1243
Abstract
This research investigates the nature by which first- and second-generation Irish young adults of (1) African descent, (2) Asian descent, and (3) Eastern European descent explore their cultural identity(ies) through communicating and interpreting social representations relating to their ethnic and national cultures. Using [...] Read more.
This research investigates the nature by which first- and second-generation Irish young adults of (1) African descent, (2) Asian descent, and (3) Eastern European descent explore their cultural identity(ies) through communicating and interpreting social representations relating to their ethnic and national cultures. Using Social Representation Theory (SRT) and, more widely, Proculturation Theory as the theoretical underpinning, we examine how grown children of migrants construct their cultural identity(ies) by exploring external social representations. We conducted three separate in-depth focus groups for each continental group in virtual rooms on Zoom, lasting between 60 and 90 mins. A thematic analysis was pursued to understand how the participants discussed the representation of their cultural groups both in social and media-driven situations. The results indicated the overarching themes of Anchoring Irishness and Latent Media Representation, whereby participants communicated and dialogically explored their subjective interpretations of the social representations of their cultural groups which, in turn, may have informed their cultural identity(ies). Highlighting the dynamic nature of the cultural reality of Ireland and how it impacts generations after the initial migration period, this research highlights and exemplifies the importance of external social representations that serve to construct the multiple cultural identities of first- and second-generation migrants. Full article
Article
Asian Australians’ Experiences of Online Racism during the COVID-19 Pandemic
Soc. Sci. 2022, 11(5), 227; https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci11050227 - 23 May 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1258
Abstract
Between 13 November 2020 and 11 February 2021, an online national survey of 2003 Asian Australians was conducted to measure the type and frequency of self-identified Asian Australians’ experiences of racism during the COVID-19 pandemic. The survey also aimed to gauge the relationships [...] Read more.
Between 13 November 2020 and 11 February 2021, an online national survey of 2003 Asian Australians was conducted to measure the type and frequency of self-identified Asian Australians’ experiences of racism during the COVID-19 pandemic. The survey also aimed to gauge the relationships between racist experiences and targets’ mental health, wellbeing and sense of belonging. In this paper, we report findings on the type and frequency of online racist experiences and their associations with mental health, wellbeing and belonging. The survey found that 40 per cent of participants experienced racism during the COVID-19 pandemic. Within that group, 66 per cent experienced racism online. The demographic pattern of those most likely to experience online racism were younger age groups, males, those born in Australia, English speakers at home, non-Christians, and migrants who have been in Australia less than 20 years. Analysis also found a strong correlation between Asian Australians’ experiences of online racism and poor mental health, wellbeing and belonging. The relationship between experiencing racism, non-belonging and morbidity were more pronounced for those who experienced online racism compared to those who experienced racism in other offline contexts. This points to the corrosive nature of online racism on social cohesion, health and belonging. Full article
Article
Doing Research Inclusively: Understanding What It Means to Do Research with and Alongside People with Profound Intellectual Disabilities
Soc. Sci. 2022, 11(4), 159; https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci11040159 - 01 Apr 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 3003
Abstract
Positive developments in inclusion in line with ‘Nothing about us without us’ have rarely extended to people with profound intellectual disabilities. Advances in inclusive research are in danger of leaving this group (and their families and allies) on the outside, with researchers relying [...] Read more.
Positive developments in inclusion in line with ‘Nothing about us without us’ have rarely extended to people with profound intellectual disabilities. Advances in inclusive research are in danger of leaving this group (and their families and allies) on the outside, with researchers relying on proxies at best, or more often omitting this group as ‘too difficult’ to include in the research process at all. This paper argues that finding a way for people with profound intellectual disabilities to belong in inclusive research is important. Using examples, small stories and photographs, it explores and illustrates potential ways to research with and alongside those with profound intellectual disabilities that celebrate different kinds of agency and personhood and that support relational autonomy. The paper concludes that rather than starting from how inclusive research is currently conceived, the starting point should be a deep knowledge of people with profound intellectual and multiple disabilities. The way forward is likely to be an inclusive research culture that can accommodate ‘being with’ as core to its research approach. This will enable the voices of people with profound intellectual disabilities to inform the research in creating intersubjective knowledge together. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Inclusive Research: Is the Road More or Less Well Travelled?)
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Article
Subsidy Reform and the Transformation of Social Contracts: The Cases of Egypt, Iran and Morocco
Soc. Sci. 2022, 11(2), 85; https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci11020085 - 21 Feb 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1938
Abstract
After independence, subsidies have been a cornerstone of the social contracts in the Middle East and North Africa. Governments spent heavily to reduce poverty and strengthen their legitimacy. Yet, subsidies became financially unsustainable and donors pressed for reforms. This article assesses reform processes [...] Read more.
After independence, subsidies have been a cornerstone of the social contracts in the Middle East and North Africa. Governments spent heavily to reduce poverty and strengthen their legitimacy. Yet, subsidies became financially unsustainable and donors pressed for reforms. This article assesses reform processes in Morocco, Egypt and Iran between 2010 and 2017, thus before sanctions against Iran were further tightened and before the COVID-19 pandemic. We show that even though the three countries had similar approaches to subsidisation, they have used distinct strategies to reduce subsidies and minimise social unrest—with the effect that their respective social contracts developed differently. Morocco tried to preserve its social contract as much as possible; it removed most subsidies, explained the need for reform, engaged in societal dialogue and implemented some compensatory measures, preserving most of its prevailing social contract. Egypt, in contrast, dismantled subsidy schemes more radically, without systematic information and consultation campaigns and offered limited compensation. By using repression and a narrative of collective security, the government transformed the social contract from a provision to a protection pact. Iran replaced subsidies with a more cost-efficient and egalitarian quasi-universal cash transfer scheme, paving the way to a more inclusive social contract. We conclude that the approach that governments used to reform subsidies transformed social contracts in fundamentally different ways and we hypothesize on the degree of intentionality of these differences. Full article
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Article
Characteristics and Impacts of Conflict-Related Sexual Violence against Men in the DRC: A Phenomenological Research Design
Soc. Sci. 2022, 11(2), 34; https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci11020034 - 20 Jan 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1075
Abstract
There is increased evidence of the existence of sexual violence against men and boys in many war-stricken areas. Yet, there are still discrepancies in understanding male victims’ experience in depth. Furthermore, limited research on sexual violence against men in the context of the [...] Read more.
There is increased evidence of the existence of sexual violence against men and boys in many war-stricken areas. Yet, there are still discrepancies in understanding male victims’ experience in depth. Furthermore, limited research on sexual violence against men in the context of the war in the Eastern Region of the Congo has been undertaken to date. As part of addressing this knowledge gap, a phenomenological study was conducted to shed light and understand the experience of male survivors of sexual violence. The participants were males who experienced sexual violence in the war. Individual semi-structured interviews were conducted. The findings show that participants experienced a wide range of psychological and physical wounds other than rape. Their experience during the event (s) falls under the umbrella term gender-based violence (GBV) which encompasses other forms of harmful acts against one’s will including sexual assault, genital mutilation, acts of penetration with different objects, and cultural inappropriate actions with intention to sexually harass and humiliate. The results show a wide and complex range of short and long-term impact on multiple levels. The findings add clarification and understanding to the controversial and taboo subject around conflict-related sexual violence against men in the Congo. They shed light on how the understanding of gender impacts participants’ masculine identity, their sexual victimization experience, and healing journey. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Gender-Related Violence: Social Sciences’ Research & Methods)
Article
Culture and Social Change in Mothers’ and Fathers’ Individualism, Collectivism and Parenting Attitudes
Soc. Sci. 2021, 10(12), 459; https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci10120459 - 30 Nov 2021
Viewed by 2630
Abstract
Cultures and families are not static over time but evolve in response to social transformations, such as changing gender roles, urbanization, globalization, and technology uptake. Historically, individualism and collectivism have been widely used heuristics guiding cross-cultural comparisons, yet these orientations may evolve over [...] Read more.
Cultures and families are not static over time but evolve in response to social transformations, such as changing gender roles, urbanization, globalization, and technology uptake. Historically, individualism and collectivism have been widely used heuristics guiding cross-cultural comparisons, yet these orientations may evolve over time, and individuals within cultures and cultures themselves can have both individualist and collectivist orientations. Historical shifts in parents’ attitudes also have occurred within families in several cultures. As a way of understanding mothers’ and fathers’ individualism, collectivism, and parenting attitudes at this point in history, we examined parents in nine countries that varied widely in country-level individualism rankings. Data included mothers’ and fathers’ reports (N = 1338 families) at three time points in China, Colombia, Italy, Jordan, Kenya, Philippines, Sweden, Thailand, and the United States. More variance was accounted for by within-culture than between-culture factors for parents’ individualism, collectivism, progressive parenting attitudes, and authoritarian parenting attitudes, which were predicted by a range of sociodemographic factors that were largely similar for mothers and fathers and across cultural groups. Social changes from the 20th to the 21st century may have contributed to some of the similarities between mothers and fathers and across the nine countries. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Parenting in the 21st Century)
Article
Producing Child-Centered Interventions: Social Network Factors Related to the Quality of Professional Development for Teachers of Autistic Students
Soc. Sci. 2021, 10(12), 453; https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci10120453 - 25 Nov 2021
Viewed by 1677
Abstract
Autistic students benefit from child-centered goals that align with evidence-based practices (EBPs) that meet their individualized needs, however, most teachers are not trained in how to implement autism-specific EBPs. The challenges do not lie with teachers alone. Professional development (PD) providers, such as [...] Read more.
Autistic students benefit from child-centered goals that align with evidence-based practices (EBPs) that meet their individualized needs, however, most teachers are not trained in how to implement autism-specific EBPs. The challenges do not lie with teachers alone. Professional development (PD) providers, such as district or regional autism experts who train and coach teachers on how to implement autism-specific EBPs, face barriers accessing the needed supports to conduct high-quality PD and lack experience with individualizing their methods for training and coaching teachers. When PD providers have networks of professional support, they can potentially gain access to resources to provide successful individualized coaching for teachers. No research has measured the impact of the social networks of PD providers on their performance as coaches in classrooms for teachers of autistic students. To test the hypothesis that social network resources can impact the performance of PD providers who coach teachers how to use EBPs for their autistic students, we conducted social network analysis with PD providers. Findings suggest that network factors were associated with the self-reported performance for PD providers. PD providers who have more people in their networks who were autism EBP experts, as well as more people in their networks who supported them with how to individualize their PD efforts to specific teachers or districts, had higher performance as teacher coaches. We discuss future research about how to support network development for PD providers and policy implications. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Child-Centric Approaches in Theory, Policy and Practice)
Article
Gender and Financialization of the Criminal Justice System
Soc. Sci. 2021, 10(11), 446; https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci10110446 - 22 Nov 2021
Viewed by 1965
Abstract
(1) The increase in women’s mass incarceration over the past forty years raises questions about how justice-involved women experience the financial aspects of the criminal justice system. (2) We conducted in-depth interviews with twenty justice-involved women and seven criminal law and reentry professionals, [...] Read more.
(1) The increase in women’s mass incarceration over the past forty years raises questions about how justice-involved women experience the financial aspects of the criminal justice system. (2) We conducted in-depth interviews with twenty justice-involved women and seven criminal law and reentry professionals, and conducted courtroom observations in southeastern Pennsylvania. (3) The results from this exploratory research reveal that women’s roles as caregivers, their greater health needs, and higher likelihood of being poor creates barriers to paying fines and fees and exacerbates challenges in reentry. (4) These challenges contribute to a cycle of prolonged justice involvement and financial instability. Full article
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Article
An Ethnographic Perspective of Well-Being, Salutogenesis and Meaning Making among Refugees and Asylum Seekers in the Gambia and the United Kingdom
Soc. Sci. 2021, 10(9), 324; https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci10090324 - 27 Aug 2021
Viewed by 2080
Abstract
Research on refugees and asylum seekers largely focuses on the negative impacts that forced migration has on well-being. Though most individuals do not experience poor long-term mental health because of forced migration, less attention has been given to what factors promote positive well-being. [...] Read more.
Research on refugees and asylum seekers largely focuses on the negative impacts that forced migration has on well-being. Though most individuals do not experience poor long-term mental health because of forced migration, less attention has been given to what factors promote positive well-being. Using an ethnographic approach, I elucidate how the concept of salutogenesis can be applied to African refugees and asylum seekers living in the greater Serrekunda area of the Gambia and in Newcastle-upon-Tyne in the United Kingdom. Specifically, I explore what resources impact on the sense of coherence construct and its three components—comprehensibility, manageability and meaningfulness—and how these are embedded in everyday discussions and understandings. In total, I spent twenty months conducting ethnographic fieldwork between the two sites and conducted forty individual interviews. Amongst my interlocutors, the three most common resources that people spoke positively about, particularly as it relates to meaning making, are work, education and religion. Further research in this area is crucial in order to identify, promote and strengthen those factors facilitating positive well-being amongst those who have been forcibly displaced. Full article
Article
Determinants of the Arab Spring Protests in Tunisia, Egypt, and Libya: What Have We Learned?
Soc. Sci. 2021, 10(8), 282; https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci10080282 - 23 Jul 2021
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 3302
Abstract
This paper provides empirical evidence on the determinants of protest participation in Arab Spring countries that witnessed major uprisings and in which social unrest was most pronounced. Namely, this paper investigates the latter in Tunisia, Egypt, and Libya using a micro-level data survey, [...] Read more.
This paper provides empirical evidence on the determinants of protest participation in Arab Spring countries that witnessed major uprisings and in which social unrest was most pronounced. Namely, this paper investigates the latter in Tunisia, Egypt, and Libya using a micro-level data survey, the Arab Transformation Survey (2015). The findings of our probit regression analysis reveal that gender, trust in government, corruption concern, and social media usage have influenced the individual’s perception of protest activism. We find evidence that the role of economic factors was inconsistent, whereas political grievances were more clearly related to the motive to participate in the uprisings. We then control for country-specific effects whereby results show that citizens in each country showed different characteristics of participation. The findings of this research would set the ground for governments to better assess the health of their societies and be a model of governance in the Middle East. Full article
Article
Detained during a Pandemic: Human Rights behind Locked Doors
Soc. Sci. 2021, 10(7), 276; https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci10070276 - 20 Jul 2021
Viewed by 1995
Abstract
Every year, thousands of people are detained in United States immigration detention centers. Built to prison specifications and often run by private companies, these detention centers have long been criticized by academics and advocacy groups. Problems such as overcrowding and lack of access [...] Read more.
Every year, thousands of people are detained in United States immigration detention centers. Built to prison specifications and often run by private companies, these detention centers have long been criticized by academics and advocacy groups. Problems such as overcrowding and lack of access to basic healthcare and legal representation have plagued individuals in detention centers for years. These failings have been illuminated by the COVID-19 pandemic, which has disproportionately impacted detained migrants. Against a human rights backdrop, this article will examine how the U.S. immigration detention system has proven even more problematic in the context of the pandemic and offer insights to help avoid similar outcomes in the future. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Crimmigration in the Age of COVID-19)
Article
Non-Parental Investment in Children and Child Outcomes after Parental Death or Divorce in a Patrilocal Society
Soc. Sci. 2021, 10(6), 196; https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci10060196 - 27 May 2021
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 2077
Abstract
Children rely on support from parental helpers (alloparents), perhaps especially in high-needs contexts. Considerable evidence indicates that closer relatives and maternal relatives are the most likely to provide this care, as inclusive fitness theory suggests, but whether this is equally true across different [...] Read more.
Children rely on support from parental helpers (alloparents), perhaps especially in high-needs contexts. Considerable evidence indicates that closer relatives and maternal relatives are the most likely to provide this care, as inclusive fitness theory suggests, but whether this is equally true across different family types and in culturally patrilocal societies requires investigation. This structured interview study (N = 208 respondents with 323 dependent children) focuses on who helps raise children in rural Bangladesh after the father’s or mother’s death, or divorce, in comparison to families with both parents present or the father temporarily a migrant laborer. Family types differed in where and with whom children resided, who served as their primary and secondary caregivers, and who provided material support, but mother’s kin played a major role, and were the primary providers of material resources from outside the child’s household in all family types. Despite the patrilineal ideology, only one-quarter of children of divorce lived with the father or his family, and even after the death of the mother, only 59% remained with father or other paternal kin. Household income varied by family type and was a strong predictor of child height and weight. The children of deceased mothers moved between successive caregivers especially frequently, and were uniquely likely to have no schooling. The typology of Bangladeshi society as patrilocal obscures the extent to which matrilateral family support children’s well-being. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue The Behavioral Ecology of the Family)
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Article
Becoming White in a White Supremacist State: The Public and Psychological Wages of Whiteness for Undocumented 1.5-Generation Brazilians
Soc. Sci. 2021, 10(5), 184; https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci10050184 - 20 May 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1728
Abstract
This study draws on in-depth and longitudinal interviews with twenty-nine 1.5-generation Brazilian immigrants, all of whom can pass as white and experienced illegality in young adulthood. I argue that they benefit from what W.E.B. Du Bois calls “the public and psychological wages of [...] Read more.
This study draws on in-depth and longitudinal interviews with twenty-nine 1.5-generation Brazilian immigrants, all of whom can pass as white and experienced illegality in young adulthood. I argue that they benefit from what W.E.B. Du Bois calls “the public and psychological wages of whiteness”. That is, white and white-passing, undocumented 1.5-generation Brazilian men and women can largely navigate public space without being stopped, questioned, arrested, detained and/or deported. Additionally, they benefit psychologically—as they gain confidence due to perceived whiteness, even as their immigration status would render them vulnerable to exploitation in the labor market and deportation. These public and psychological wages of whiteness can facilitate social and material gains. I argue that there are three mechanisms by which they experience the wages of whiteness. First, whiteness brings assumed innocence. Second, white racial solidarity with other whites facilitates opportunities and protection. Third, some 1.5-generation Brazilians actively construct whiteness to accrue the public and psychological wages. These findings challenge the master status perspective of illegality and underscore the importance of an intersectional framework for understanding immigrants’ varied experiences with illegality, bringing to light the quotidian, gendered practices and identities that sustain the structures of white supremacy. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Immigration and White Supremacy in the 21st Century)
Article
Unfinished Decriminalization: The Impact of Section 19 of the Prostitution Reform Act 2003 on Migrant Sex Workers’ Rights and Lives in Aotearoa New Zealand
Soc. Sci. 2021, 10(5), 179; https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci10050179 - 19 May 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 3563
Abstract
In 2003, Aotearoa New Zealand (NZ) passed the Prostitution Reform Act 2003 (PRA), which decriminalized sex work for NZ citizens and holders of permanent residency (PR) while excluding migrant sex workers (MSWs) from its protection. This is due to Section 19 (s19) of [...] Read more.
In 2003, Aotearoa New Zealand (NZ) passed the Prostitution Reform Act 2003 (PRA), which decriminalized sex work for NZ citizens and holders of permanent residency (PR) while excluding migrant sex workers (MSWs) from its protection. This is due to Section 19 (s19) of the PRA, added at the last minute against advice by the Aotearoa New Zealand Sex Workers’ Collective (NZPC) as an anti-trafficking clause. Because of s19, migrants on temporary visas found to be working as sex workers are liable to deportation by Immigration New Zealand (INZ). Drawing on original ethnographic and interview data gathered over 24 months of fieldwork, our study finds that migrant sex workers in New Zealand are vulnerable to violence and exploitation, and are too afraid to report these to the police for fear of deportation, corroborating earlier studies and studies completed while we were collecting data. Full article
Article
What about the “Social Aspect of COVID”? Exploring the Determinants of Social Isolation on the Greek Population during the COVID-19 Lockdown
Soc. Sci. 2021, 10(1), 27; https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci10010027 - 18 Jan 2021
Cited by 7 | Viewed by 2875
Abstract
The COVID-19 pandemic, its duration, and its intensity are harbingers of demographic change. In the context of social demography, it is crucial to explore the social challenge emerging from the coronavirus disease. The main purpose of this study is (i) to explore the [...] Read more.
The COVID-19 pandemic, its duration, and its intensity are harbingers of demographic change. In the context of social demography, it is crucial to explore the social challenge emerging from the coronavirus disease. The main purpose of this study is (i) to explore the determinants that affected the population in Greece in terms of social isolation during the lockdown period and (ii) to examine possible differences in the assessment of the social isolation factors depending on whether individuals live in urban or rural areas or regions with relative geographical isolation. Field research was conducted with 4216 questionnaires during the first wave of COVID-19 (March to April 2020). Multivariate analysis methods were applied to detect the main factors that impacted the feeling of social isolation, and nonparametric tests were performed to detect possible differences between population groups. Despite the resistance shown to the spread of the disease, the Greek population totally complied with the measures of social distancing and thus was socially and psychologically affected. The results indicate that psychosomatic disorders, employment situations, changes in sleep habits, socialization on the Internet, demographic status, health concerns, and trust in government and the media response determine the Greeks’ social isolation feeling. Pandemic and confinement measures have consequences for individuals and social groups and may prejudice social cohesion at multiple levels. By understanding how the pandemic affected the societies, interventions and public policies may be implemented to ensure both social cohesion and populations’ wellbeing by addressing the social isolation feeling. Full article
Article
The Visual Politics of the Alternative for Germany (AfD): Anti-Islam, Ethno-Nationalism, and Gendered Images
Soc. Sci. 2021, 10(1), 20; https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci10010020 - 14 Jan 2021
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 4512
Abstract
This article is an empirical investigation into the visual mobilization strategies by far-right political parties for election campaigns constructing Muslim immigrants as a “threat” to the nation. Drawing on an interdisciplinary theoretical approach of social movement studies and research on media and communication, [...] Read more.
This article is an empirical investigation into the visual mobilization strategies by far-right political parties for election campaigns constructing Muslim immigrants as a “threat” to the nation. Drawing on an interdisciplinary theoretical approach of social movement studies and research on media and communication, I focus on the far-right political party Alternative for Germany (AfD), which has produced several widespread inflammatory series of visual election posters featuring anti-Islam rhetoric, combined with provocative images of gender and sexuality. By approaching visual politics through a perspective on actors constructing visual forms of political mobilization, I show how far-right populist “movement parties” are supported by professional graphic designers commercializing extremist ideologies by creating ambivalent images and text messages. My findings on the AfD’s visual campaign politics document the instrumentalization and appropriation of the rhetoric of women’s empowerment and LGBT rights discourse, helping the AfD to rebrand its image as a liberal democratic opposition party, while at the same time, maintaining its illiberal political agenda on gender and sexuality. Visual representations of gender and sexuality in professionally created election posters served to ridicule and shame Muslim minorities and denounce their “Otherness”—while also promoting a heroic self-image of the party as a savior of white women and Western civilization from the threat of male Muslim migrants. By documenting the visual politics of the AfD, as embedded in transnational cooperation between different actors, including visual professional graphic designers and far-right party activists, my multimodal analysis shows how far-right movement parties marketize and commercialize their image as “progressive” in order to reach out to new voters. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue The Global Rise of the Extreme Right)
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Article
Making Sense of Murder: The Reality versus the Realness of Gang Homicides in Two Contexts
Soc. Sci. 2021, 10(1), 17; https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci10010017 - 12 Jan 2021
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1950
Abstract
Despite the proliferation of research examining gang violence, little is known about how gang members experience, make sense of, and respond to peer fatalities. Drawing from two ethnographies in the Netherlands and Canada, this paper interrogates how gang members experience their affiliates’ murder [...] Read more.
Despite the proliferation of research examining gang violence, little is known about how gang members experience, make sense of, and respond to peer fatalities. Drawing from two ethnographies in the Netherlands and Canada, this paper interrogates how gang members experience their affiliates’ murder in different street milieus. We describe how gang members in both studies made sense of and navigated their affiliates’ murder(s) by conducting pseudo-homicide investigations, being hypervigilant, and attributing blameworthiness to the victim. We then demonstrate that while the Netherland’s milder street culture amplifies the significance of homicide, signals the authenticity of gang life, and reaffirms or tests group commitment, frequent and normalized gun violence in Canada has desensitized gang-involved men to murder, created a communal and perpetual state of insecurity, and eroded group cohesion. Lastly, we compare the ‘realness’ of gang homicide in The Hague with the ‘reality’ of lethal violence in Toronto, drawing attention to the importance of the ‘local’ in making sense of murder and contrasting participants’ narratives of interpretation. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Research on Gang-Related Violence in the 21st Century)

Review

Review
Framing Studies Evolution in the Social Media Era. Digital Advancement and Reorientation of the Research Agenda
Soc. Sci. 2022, 11(1), 9; https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci11010009 - 27 Dec 2021
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1925
Abstract
Framing studies remain a powerful line of research in political communication. However, in recent years, coinciding with the emergence of social media, theoretical and operational advances have been detected, as well as a significant reorientation of its research agenda. The interaction between media [...] Read more.
Framing studies remain a powerful line of research in political communication. However, in recent years, coinciding with the emergence of social media, theoretical and operational advances have been detected, as well as a significant reorientation of its research agenda. The interaction between media and platforms such as Twitter or Facebook has built a clearly hybrid communicative environment and profoundly transformed the organization of public debate. This is the case, especially, with processes such as the setting of the public agenda or the construction of interpretive frames. Based on a systematic review of the international reference literature (2011–2021), this article analyses the influence of social media on the evolution of framing studies. Moreover, specifically, the beginning of a new stage of digital development is contextualized, and a triple research impact is explored. The main contributions of the text are that it (1) identifies advances in the theoretical and empirical organization of these studies; (2) explores its reorientation of content towards a greater balance between the analysis of media and political frames; and (3) reviews the recent experimental development of effects studies. Finally, the main challenges for future research in this field are detailed. Full article
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