"NIHIL SINE DEO" IN FAR-RIGHT PROTESTS
CEREMONIAL REVOLUTIONS DURING ANTI-VACCINE PROTESTS IN ROMANIA
Keywords:far-right, protests, counter-hegemony, ceremonial revolutions, Romania
This study investigates the far-right counter-hegemonic discourses employed in Romania during the Covid-19 vaccine roll-out and the promotion of green certificates. Using an array of traditional and occult symbols as well as religious iconography, the protests held by the Alliance for the Union of Romanians (AUR) employed ritualistic ceremonies and espoused counter-hegemonic discourses that confronted the authorities’ with the extreme religio-nationalist idea of “Romanianness”.
Methodologically, this study combines digital ethnography of more than 30 protests in 2021-2022, with data collected from both social and conventional media as well as visual analysis of relevant discourses. The results show that the iconography of analysed protests can be interpreted as new rituals of rebellion against the authorities’ decisions to restrict the movement of people. Likewise, AUR’s on-the-ground discourse conveyed new counter-hegemonic that rejected neo-liberal ideals. Moreover, the analysis reveals that the performance styles used during the demonstrations show striking similarities with the January 6th Insurrection in the United States.
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