The main aim of this dissertation is to offer an analysis of how the Arabic-speaking community on Twitter has discussed about the Islamic State from 2014 to 2017. The study is based on a database of over 32 million tweets in Arabic that contain references to IS and that stretches across a three-year period, starting from the rise of the Islamic State (in October 2014) to its military defeat in its unofficial capital of Raqqa (in September 2017). The first chapter presents the results of a sentiment analysis I conducted based on machine learning of the support for and opposition to IS, as well as a topic analysis of the most recurrent themes in the Arabic-Speaking Twitter-sphere debate on IS. In the second chapter, I offer a statistical analysis of the variables that make up my model for predicting support for the Islamic State. The third chapter zooms in on a subset of the overall database, which consists of Tweets on IS that use a sectarian terminology towards the Shīʿī, to analyse whether sectarianism is a factor in accounting for support for IS. The dissertation aims to contribute to existing scholarship on the Islamic State, its propaganda, and the Twitter discourse on IS in five key ways. First, the dissertation looks at responses to IS propaganda and thereby has a different focal point than the majority of works in the field, which concentrate on recurrent themes in the propaganda itself. Second, the study not only considers support for IS, but also accounts for anti-IS discourse on Twitter. Third, it provides a more fine-grained analysis of the support for IS among Arabic-speaking Twitter users by differentiating between, and accounting for, various phases in its political development (i.e. peak, decline, defeat). Fourth, the analysis draws from a so-called ‘building block’ approach to distinguish between support for IS and various elements of its ideology, which could be used to study support for other radical groups as well. Fifth, the dissertation offers a detailed study of the role that anti-Shīʿa sectarian discourse plays in support for IS, which shows that this type of rhetoric which contains religious-based hostility towards Shīʿa is not a prerogative of IS alone, but is also widespread among its opponents.
TWEETING THE CALIPHATE. THE IDEOLOGY OF IS IN THE ARABIC-SPEAKING TWITTER SPHERE / M. Colombo ; tutor: L. Curini ; coordinatore NASP: M. Jessoula. - Milano : Università degli studi di Milano. Dipartimento di Scienze Sociali e Politiche, 2020 Jun 16. ((32. ciclo, Anno Accademico 2019.
|Titolo:||TWEETING THE CALIPHATE. THE IDEOLOGY OF IS IN THE ARABIC-SPEAKING TWITTER SPHERE|
|Supervisori e coordinatori interni:||JESSOULA, MATTEO ROBERTO CARLO|
|Data di pubblicazione:||16-giu-2020|
|Parole Chiave:||jihadism; terrorism; social media; Islamic State; sectarianism; Twitter|
|Settore Scientifico Disciplinare:||Settore SPS/04 - Scienza Politica|
|Citazione:||TWEETING THE CALIPHATE. THE IDEOLOGY OF IS IN THE ARABIC-SPEAKING TWITTER SPHERE / M. Colombo ; tutor: L. Curini ; coordinatore NASP: M. Jessoula. - Milano : Università degli studi di Milano. Dipartimento di Scienze Sociali e Politiche, 2020 Jun 16. ((32. ciclo, Anno Accademico 2019.|
|Appare nelle tipologie:||Tesi di dottorato|