The construction of celebrity on social media platforms : Instagirls and the (im)politeness of self-praise

Autoři

KOVÁČOVÁ Dominika

Rok publikování 2019
Druh Další prezentace na konferencích
Fakulta / Pracoviště MU

Filozofická fakulta

Citace
Popis Recognizing the role of digital celebrities in transforming the contemporary celebrity culture, this dissertation research identifies and thoroughly examines the self-presentation practices of highly popular female users of Instagram. While the author proposes to refer to this group of Instagram users as ‘Instagirls’, the media frequently address them as ‘(nano-/micro-)influencers’ owing to a significant influence they exert on their followers (Djafarova, 2017). As the influence of Instagirls has been observed particularly in the fashion industry, the dataset consists of 3,948 microposts uploaded by five London-based Instagirls who present and brand themselves as fashion and lifestyle bloggers. This work seeks to present an innovative approach to the analysis of social media data: the collected Instagram posts are studied not only synchronically but also diachronically in order to reveal any changes in one’s self-presentation strategies and visual content curation. Adopting a multimodal discourse analysis approach, the study examines all three elements of the Instagram post – the visual element, the textual caption and the accompanying metadata – and highlights their role in the construction of identity online. Simultaneously, the dissertation research explores several concepts that play a significant role in the Instagirls’ identity performance, namely the narrative potential of Instagram posts, authenticity and (in)formality. This presentation, however, will primarily concentrate on the analysis of self-praise, which is often considered integral to the Instagirls’ self-presentation online. Drawing on Brown and Levinson’s politeness theory (1987), the author discusses the examples of bald-on-record self-praise and modified self-praise identified in the data and provides some preliminary findings regarding their frequency and function. Most importantly, the author argues that grasping the principles of the Instagirls’ identity performance represents an important step towards an enhanced understanding of the concept of digital celebrity and its construction in the contemporary participatory culture.
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