· Digital Islam challenges offline Islam's authenticity and accuracy by exaggerating their values, traditions and cultures. As seen in the Good Witch Clinton meme, Islam is ascribed a violent relationship with those who are LGBT, Feminist, Athiest, Socialist, Animal lovers, non-Muslims and Liberals. Muslims may or may not find this to be authentic Islam in the offline context. In the "What difference does it make?" meme, the digital view of Islam challenges offline Islam's evaluation of authentic Islam. This meme makes a space for the criticism of refugees of Islamic countries. Similar to the function of these memes, creating an online space for opposing views is the aim of alt-muslim.com. Though Alt-muslim.com is introspective and these memes are open to discussion in the general public, both allow the audience "to develop a different relationship with their faith, to objectify it beyond tradition, and revise it in light of the exigencies of modern life". (lecture 11/10/16). The Good Witch Clinton meme represents the bridging of offline religion and movie references to the online discussion of Islam and politics while the "What difference does it make?" meme represents the blurring of offline Islam and online discussion of Islam ad politics. The Good Witch meme represents bridging because the portrayal of Clinton as The Good Witch assigns her the aloof yet malevolent characteristics of the Good Witch satirically enlightening the online discussion of Muslim refugee crisis. The "What difference does it make?" meme takes an online discussion and blurs it with a picture from an offline rally and quote from an offline speech.
Friday, November 4, 2016
The source of authority referred to in these images is that of Hillary Clinton's as Secretary of State and as a candidate in the 2016 election. This emerges from an offline context. The logic at work in this case study regarding how authority is being voiced in this case study is one of dialectics and paradox. Because the memes in this case study expressed very polarized, biased and flagrant claims against Clinton and Islam anonymously, uneven gains emerge. Some memes Islam is painted as it is in the second meme, extremely violent and closed minded, while other times other values are ascribed to the religion. Thus, the authority of Clinton is challenged as her values are questioned and the authority of Islam is completely disregarded and disrespected through anonymous online claims. This case study defines religious authority primarily through it's ideology. As seen in the second meme, the ideology of Islam is called into question as pro Hitler, abusive to women, anti gay, anti Christian and anti american. By defining and framing Islamic authority in this way, the message communicated about Islam and Clinton is shocking and loud. The shock value of the messages of the memes incites a multitude of responses; anger, activity, frustration. These continuous, unrelenting shocking messages about the ideology of Islamic authority eventually functions to erode the value of the information and the validity of that side of the religious political argument in the online context
Friday, October 28, 2016
In my case study on memes about Clinton's stance on Syrian refugees, I have seen the blurring and bridging cross media / transmedia narratives about religion enacted. For example, in the Austin Powers meme, the meme draws the idea of an ignorant, overzealous villain from Dr. Evil. A movie is an offline idea so there fore bringing it online and adding religious political context is blurring the offline and online. The Justin Beiber meme is an example of bridging the offline and the online. The online pop cultural media discourse about Justin Beiber's hair cut, which even acquired its own hashtag, is separate from the offline discourse about Clinton's interactions with Syria but bridged in this meme. The Justin Beiber meme uses a sarcastic, pointed tone of humor in order to make light of the priority of online discourse. This shows the participatory nature of online memes by allowing the consumer of memes to also be a producer of memes. By becoming a producer of memes, one can change the dialogue in the online forum. This meme functions as a wake up call to those focused on pop culture online rather than, what the producer views as more important, religious politics.
blurring - communicated online is not being communicated off line at all
bridging - distinct yet linked
Thursday, October 20, 2016
My case study focuses on Islam. Specifically, those Muslims in the Middle East. Gathering information from these four memes, key beliefs of Islam include ones that don't promote democracy, and promotes terrorism and rape. The crescent of Islam is identified in the top meme. The traditional dress of long robes and head coverings is identified in the third meme. The religious identity of those associated with Islam as depicted in this collection of memes is one that is hostile, perverse and violent. The Muslim treatment of women and support of terrorist violence is described in these memes using blunt terms. Rape victims being imprisoned is backwards and cruel. Stoning women is barbaric and sexist. Terrorists are a global menace and feared all over the world. These simple terms make the religion seem strict and extremely critical. Similar to the picture that is painted of Islam in the video game "Under Seige", where a shooter avenges the massacre in a mosque by shooting everything in sight, putting these violent ideals into the political light gives Islam a very harsh identity.
With this meme selection, I hope to explore the media’s portrayal of Clinton’s interactions with Islam. This specific collection of meme’s will focus on the Syrian refugee crisis and Clinton’s use of campaign donations from various Islamic groups. The creation of countless meme’s on this issue express an array of highly opinionated views. These meme’s create a discourse which questions Clinton’s authenticity. This issue of the Syrian civil war is one which is extremely pressing and only continues to become more urgent. This functions to only make the meme’s more outspoken and accusatory. As seen in the meme on the top, even her logo is brought into question for relation to the pressing issue. In addition to claims made about Clinton, the meme’s also make claims about Islam. This is seen in the meme on the bottom with the use of the term “foreign terrorists”. This term is certainly not neutral in the description of religious extremists. Through more meme’s like these, I hope to discuss the ways in which media shapes the conversation about Clinton’s interaction with Islam.