Leadership, Populism, and Resistance
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Leadership, Populism, and Resistance

Edited by Kristin M.S. Bezio and George R. Goethals

Leadership, Populism, and Resistance draws upon the study of history, politics, policy, media, virtue, and heroism to examine the ways in which populism and popular movements have evolved, what we have learned (and failed to learn) from them, how we depict and discuss them through popular media and the press, and, finally, how we can understand virtue and heroism as a consequence—or reaction—to populism and popularity.
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Chapter 8: TheResistance: leadership and the exercise of dissent in the Twitterverse

Kimberly Yost

Abstract

This chapter explores the emergence and coalition of virtual groups on Twitter in the aftermath of the 2016 election to voice opposition to the Trump administration and GOP agenda. Collectively using the hashtag #TheResistance, subgroups such as #GeeksResist, #StarFleet, #RebelAlliance, #HeroesResist, #RebelScum, #DAResists, #Galactica, and others, demonstrate the emergence of leaders in an online environment for creating community and common purpose in the exercise of dissent. Interestingly, these groups have co-opted the characters of science-fiction-fantasy narratives not only as a means of creating community but also of enabling intragroup conferral of leadership. Discussion includes team development, challenges for real world activism, intersectionality, and the anonymity of a character account as a catalyst for self-empowerment, leadership, and dissent.

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