Dr. Wiggins' "Boogaloo and Civil War 2: Memetic Antagonism in Expressions of Covert Activism" Published in Prestigious New Media & Society
Dr. Bradley Wiggins, associate professor and department head of media communications, was informed that an article he wrote was recently accepted for publication by the prestigious and highly-ranked academic journal, New Media & Society and according to Journal Citation Reports, its 2019 impact factor of 4.577 gives it a ranking of 1 out of 79 journals in the category 'Communication'.
The title of Dr. Wiggins' article is "Boogaloo and Civil War 2: Memetic Antagonism in Expressions of Covert Activism" and was submitted March 1, 2020, underwent two revisions and received immediate acceptance on July 6, 2020.
The term boogaloo refers to a disparate group of individuals linked together mostly due to concerns about gun control and a desire for armed, insurrectionist violence in the United States. The group has been covered by the New York Times, as well as the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, among others.
Here is the abstract of Dr. Wiggins' article:
Internet memes are remixed images, videos, GIFs, hashtags, and similar content that usually incorporates humor but also some form of political or cultural critique (Milner, 2012; Shifman, 2014; Wiggins and Bowers, 2014). Several studies have previously examined the ways in which minority groups curate internet memes for the purpose of protest or other forms of activism (Frazer and Carlson, 2017; Lenhardt, 2016). This paper examines usergenerated tweets including any of the following hashtags: boogaloo, boogaloo2020, and/or civilwar2. The time period of interest on Twitter concerns any and all images posted between 15 and 25 January 2020, exactly five days before and after a controversial gun rally held in Richmond, Virginia. Drawing on Eco’s theory of semiotics, the results from a critical discourse analysis reveal a tendency toward a preference for antagonism as a means to consolidate identity for individuals engaged in online discursive practice within hybrid structures. Findings include the presence of deeply contextualized and situated logics within an emergent boogaloo discourse. In addition, the study found that hypernarrative storytelling serves the movement in terms of identity negotiation and consolidation.