Close menu


Sunderland Repository records the research produced by the University of Sunderland including practice-based research and theses.

Disaffiliation and Belonging: Twitter and its agnostic publics

Smith, Angela and Higgins, Michael T. (2014) Disaffiliation and Belonging: Twitter and its agnostic publics. Sociologia e Politiche Sociali,, 17 (2). pp. 77-89. ISSN 1591-2027

Item Type: Article


Abstract. This article looks at forms of political and public engagement to emerge in Web 2.0. Focusing on the platform Twitter, the article looks at both antagonistic and agonistic types of political engagement. It discusses
Twitter’s capacity for direct contact with main political party leaders as part of an antagonistic public discourse, geared towards creative expressions of individualised disaffiliation. However, in interventions around @EverydaySexism, the article finds collectivising practices more in keeping with an agonistic public discourse based upon involvement and the tactical use of irony and humour. While showing that the platform provides for new forms of antagonistic engagement with political elites, the article therefore offers support for the view that Web 2.0 gives rise to new and shifting formations of non-institutionally-aligned political public.

[img] PDF (Peer reviewed journal article)
Higgins_and_Smith_(2014).pdf - Published Version
Restricted to Registered users only

Download (796kB) | Request a copy

More Information

Depositing User: Angela Smith


Item ID: 5119
Identification Number:
ISSN: 1591-2027
Official URL:

Users with ORCIDS

Catalogue record

Date Deposited: 28 Oct 2014 11:24
Last Modified: 18 Dec 2019 15:37


Author: Angela Smith
Author: Michael T. Higgins

University Divisions

Faculty of Arts and Creative Industries
Faculty of Arts and Creative Industries > School of Media and Communications


Culture > English Language and Literature

Actions (login required)

View Item View Item