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Repositioning political communication through the lens of social movements. A case study of the #EndSARS movement in Nigeria & If I can’t be Black in Nigeria, where can I be Black? An autoethnography of how I navigate being Black in different geographies

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Essay 1: This essay focuses on the dissonance between the theoretical and practical applications of political communication. While political communication theory has been defined as communication between political leaders, media, and the citizens, its mainstream application has paid greater attention to political marketing. In essence, this theory has focused more on leaders' communication, especially as it concerns their elections/electoral campaigns more than the other stakeholders in its definition. In this paper, I argue that emphasis should be given to citizens' communications, especially to their political leaders. I cite the #EndSARS protests of 2020 in Nigeria as a case study that highlights what happens in a society that neglects the voice and perspective of the citizens. I employed discourse analysis to understand and explain the relationship between political communication theory and these protests. I analyzed the online protest ground (Twitter) activities, images, and songs during these protests. These tools became multidimensional tools to mobilize protesters, fund protests, demand accountability while also communicating a united message to the Nigerian government - #EndSARS – end police brutality in Nigeria.
Essay 2: This work seeks to explore the concepts of Black as a race and black as a color through the life of the researcher who because of the darker tone of her skin has been classified as ‘Black’ in America and Canada and ‘black’ in Nigeria. Exploring the idea of still not being the right type of black even in Nigeria, she uses autoethnography to detail her relationship with race, racism, colorism, and skin color. Due to the researcher’s positionality as Nigerian and never having to grapple with the idea of being Black she proffers her own definition of Blackness adding a different perspective to the already existing research on Blackness.
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Thesis advisor: Thomas, Victoria
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