Memory, politics and emotions: internet memes and protests in Venezuela and Ukraine

Makhortykh, Mykola; Aguilar, Juan Manuel González (2020). Memory, politics and emotions: internet memes and protests in Venezuela and Ukraine. Continuum: Journal of Media and Cultural Studies, 34(3), pp. 342-362. Taylor & Francis 10.1080/10304312.2020.1764782

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The article discusses interactions between emotions, memory and user-generated digital content in the context of online protest campaigns. Using as a case study anti-government protest in Ukraine (2013–2014) and Venezuela (2019), it compares how pro- and anti-government communities use visuality and memoricity of internet memes to stir affect and promote their political agendas. It shows that despite differences in the use of visual content elements, Ukrainian and Venezuelan memes have similar political functionality. In both countries, pro-government memes usually rely on simple emotional messages for propaganda/polarization purposes, whereas anti-government memes produce more nuanced statements used as a form of creative criticism/coping mechanism. These political functions are often amplified by memoricity, which is used to stigmatize regime’s opponents by pro-government communities and to legitimize protesters’ demands by anti-government communities.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)


03 Faculty of Business, Economics and Social Sciences > Social Sciences

UniBE Contributor:

Makhortykh, Mykola


000 Computer science, knowledge & systems > 070 News media, journalism & publishing
300 Social sciences, sociology & anthropology
300 Social sciences, sociology & anthropology > 320 Political science
900 History > 940 History of Europe
900 History > 980 History of South America




Taylor & Francis




Mykola Makhortykh

Date Deposited:

03 Jul 2020 14:47

Last Modified:

12 Jul 2020 02:42

Publisher DOI:


Uncontrolled Keywords:

protests, Venezuela, Ukraine, memes, visuality, memoricity




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