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A political-semiotic introduction to the Estonian “bronze-night” discourse

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On April 26–27, 2007 Estonia witnessed its largest civil unrest since the country’s regaining of independence in 1991. The mass riots related to government’s displacement of a memorial (containing a bronze statue) from the centre of Estonia’s capital to a military cemetery a couple of kilometers away came to be referred to as “bronze-night” in Estonian public discourse. Using a framework based on Laclau and Mouffe’s discourse theory, Jakobson’s model of communication and concepts from semiotics and political analysis it provides an initial chart of the discourse unified around this empty signifier “bronze-night” Keywords: Estonia; “bronze-night”; discourse; communication; democracy; populism
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: January 1, 2013

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