“Let the tournament for the woke begin!”: Euro 2020 and the reproduction of Cultural Marxist conspiracies in online criticisms of the “take the knee” protest

Jack Black, Thomas Fletcher, Mark Doidge, Colm Kearns, Daniel Kilvington, Katie Liston, Theo Lynn, Pierangelo Rosati, Gary Sinclair

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)
4 Downloads (Pure)

Abstract

Exploring online criticisms of the “take the knee” protest during “Euro 2020”, this article examines how alt- and far-right conspiracies were both constructed and communicated via the social media platform, Twitter. By providing a novel exploration of alt-right conspiracies during an international football tournament, a qualitative thematic analysis of 1,388 original tweets relating to Euro 2020 was undertaken. The findings reveal how, in criticisms levelled at both “wokeism” and the Black Lives Matter movement, anti-white criticisms of the “take the knee” protest were embroiled in alt-right conspiracies that exposed an assumed Cultural Marxist, “woke agenda” in the tournament’s organisation and mainstream media coverage. In conclusion, it is argued that conspiratorial discourses, associated with the alt-right, provided a framework through which the protest could be understood. This emphasises how the significance of conspiracy functions to promote the wider dissemination of alt-right ideology across popular cultural contexts, such as sport.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2036-2059
Number of pages24
JournalEthnic and Racial Studies
Volume47
Issue number10
Early online date5 Oct 2023
DOIs
Publication statusPublished online - 5 Oct 2023

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2023 The Author(s). Published by Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group.

Keywords

  • sport
  • racism
  • woke
  • conspiracy
  • alt-right
  • Twitter
  • Take the knee
  • anti-white racism
  • Conspiracy
  • Black lives matter
  • online hate
  • Football

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