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Valerie R. Friesen

In many parts of the developing world, sport is a non-traditional activity for girls, one which is being used increasingly by development organizations for the empowerment of girls and women. However, very little research has been done on the complex subjective perceptions and understandings of the participants themselves. The girls in this study were participants in an after-school program in Windhoek, Namibia, which combines academics and sport. I used discourse analysis to highlight issues of agency, power, and gender that emerge from their reflections on their sport participation. Girls' conversations often revealed acceptance and normalization of dominant gender norms but also a growing critical consciousness, and demonstrated the numerous ways girls resist, negotiate and engage with these discourses through their own perceptions of power, agency, and hope.

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“Something Good Distracts Us from the Bad”

Girls Cultivating Disruption

Crystal Leigh Endsley

There are increasing demands that scholars of girlhood studies pay attention to the ways in which girls of color challenge the powerful discourses that work to constrain them. I take up this call to action through an analysis of the spoken word poetry of black, brown, and mixed-race high school girls in New Orleans, Louisiana. I discuss varying levels of consciousness about these discourses as represented in the poems of three girls aged 14, 15, and 16 that offer nuanced entry into the ambiguous process of their developing identities. I link instances of disruption highlighted through their poetry to aspects of their day-to-day experience to present a theoretical intervention that I call cultivated disruption that points to the ways in which girls of color are already practicing poetry as pleasurable and creative survival.

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Tomas Max Martin

Ugandan prison staff both criticize and welcome human rights as a reform agenda that brings about insecurity as well as tangible improvements. In practice, human rights discourse is malleable enough for prison officers to cobble together a take on human rights that enables them to embrace the concept. The analysis of the emic notion of “reasonable caning” illustrates this malleability as staff concurrently take stands against inhumane violence and continue to legitimize caning while aligning with human rights. Human rights are locally negotiated, and it is argued that human rights reform cannot simply be analyzed as a submissive or opposing reaction to the top-down export of powerful global discourses. The embrace of human rights that unfolds in Ugandan prisons is rather a productive and multifaceted effort by prison officers to get purchase on legal technologies and reconceptualizations of prison management practices that affect their lives.

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Alison Fyfe

Early twenty-first century North American journalists often claim that social changes such as women's liberation and civil rights have had a dark side for girls. For supposedly abandoning the safety of their traditional role in the home, girls are disproportionately characterized as being at risk of victimization, while also being increasingly cast as risks to themselves and others. Using mixed-methods content analysis, this article demonstrates that the social construct of risky girls crystallized for Toronto news after the 1997 murder of Reena Virk in British Columbia through a raced, classed, and gendered moral panic over bad girls. Discourses changed from talk of youth violence before the murder to talk of risky girls after it. By conflating victimization with offending, risky girl discourses prioritize risk management over needs. This conflation results in the increased policing and incarceration of girls and youth of color, ultimately reinforcing social inequalities like racism and patriarchy.

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Vera Vicenzotti

This article presents an approach to mapping multivalent metaphors, that is, metaphors that imply competing values. It suggests that a metaphor's interpretative repertoire can usefully be structured in terms of worldviews derived from political philosophies. To illustrate this approach, the article analyzes how Wildnis (wild nature) is used to refer to the Zwischenstadt (hybrid peri-urban landscapes) in German language planning discourse. It thus makes a contribution toward interpreting and structuring this discourse. After outlining the methodological framework, the article presents certain elements of the interpretative repertoire of Wildnis by outlining selected liberal, Romantic, and conservative interpretations of this metaphor. It then interprets actual statements by urban and landscape planners and designers, reconstructing how they refer to various political interpretations of Wildnis. Finally, it is argued that the approach can benefit planning practice by enhancing frame awareness and by allowing for a systematic analysis of the metaphor's blind spots.

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Maria Ferretti and Enzo Rossi

Agonist theorists have argued against deliberative democrats that democratic institutions should not seek to establish a rational consensus, but rather allow political disagreements to be expressed in an adversarial form. But democratic agonism is not antagonism: some restriction of the plurality of admissible expressions is not incompatible with a legitimate public sphere. However, is it generally possible to grant this distinction between antagonism and agonism without accepting normative standards in public discourse that saliently resemble those advocated by (some) deliberative democrats? In this paper we provide an analysis of one important aspect of political communication, the use of slippery-slope arguments, and show that the fact of pluralism weakens the agonists' case for contestation as a sufficient ingredient for appropriately democratic public discourse. We illustrate that contention by identifying two specific kinds of what we call pluralism slippery slopes, that is, mechanisms whereby pluralism reinforces the efficacy of slippery-slope arguments.

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Citizens and Citizenship

The Rhetoric of Dutch Immigrant Integration Policy in 2011

Dana Rem and Des Gasper

The past generation has seen a switch to restrictive policies and language in the governance of migrants living in the Netherlands. Beginning in 2010, a new government with right-wing populist backing went further, declaring the centrality of proposed characteristic historic Dutch values. In this article, we investigate a key policy document to characterize and understand this policy change. Discourse analysis as an exploration of language choices, including use of ideas from rhetoric, helps us apply and test ideas from governmentality studies of migration and from discourse studies as social theorizing. We trace the chosen problem formulation; the delineation, naming, and predication of population categories; the understanding of citizenship, community, and integration; and the overall rhetoric, including chosen metaphors and nuancing of emphases, that links the elements into a meaning-rich world picture. A “neoliberal communitarian” conception of citizenship has emerged that could unfortunately subject many immigrants to marginalization and exclusion.

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'Everything is still before you'

The irony of youth discourse in Siberia

David G. Anderson

Russians often use slogans to triangulate themselves between state and society, and slogans about youth are no exception. This article conducts a cultural historical analysis of how the concept of 'youth' has been applied both to young people and to the idea of a nation in Siberia. The author argues that categories of youth in Russia, and in Siberia, are very different from their Euro-American cousins. Citing survey data, and material from historical and contemporary movements for self-determination, he argues that youth discourse is future-oriented, collectivist, and is often used in an ironic register in order to carry moral messages.

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Idleness in South Africa Re-visited

Ethnographic methods and `Hottentot' travel accounts

Norman Buchignani

This paper has two broad objectives. In section I, I identify several ways that widely accepted criteria in anthropology for adequate ethnographic data collection, analysis and representation can be usefully applied to the study of text-based discourses on Europe’s Others. In particular, I suggest that the more consistent application of fieldwork- derived methodological standards and practice to travel literature could help analysts approach levels of validity and reliability now routinely demanded in ethnographic research. Their use might also lead to ethnographies of text that are more consistent with long-term anthropological research paradigms than works employing methods derived from other fields of inquiry.

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Enis Sulstarova

This article investigates the role of Islam in representations of the self and the other in the contemporary Albanian national discourse, on the basis of an analysis of history textbooks published in postcommunist Albania between 1990 and 2013, focusing specifically on texts used in pre-university education. Even after the dissolution of the Socialist Republic of Albania in 1991, Islam in Albania continued to be associated with concepts derived from the socialist era, including the primacy of the nation as well as Eurocentrism and secularism, which were seen as the pinnacle of modernity.