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Culture-driven emotional profiles and online discourse extremism

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Abstract

Discourse practices are investigated in English and Polish online comments which display different degrees of linguistic extremism. The present contribution identifies the contexts and targets of such practices and argues that hate speech is conditioned by culture-driven emotional experience and emotion expression profiles prevailing in particular societies. The discussion focuses on Polish and UK English emotionality and on relevant cultural models of the negative emotion clusters identified in Polish and English online political and social comments in posts collected between 2013 and 2018 on topics connected mainly, though not exclusively, with migration and the perception of the Other. First, the article shows that there are differences in the display and expression of emotions between English and Polish discourses, the latter being more negatively explicit and more often addressing the current online interactant. Second, in both groups, two opposing camps are identified. Finally, the rise in meaning and expressiveness of radicalization is observed in both English and Polish across the investigated period.

Keywords: culture; discourse; emotions; extremism; hate speech; online comments

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: July 13, 2020

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