Social cohesion, Twitter and far-right politics in Australia: Diversity in the democratic mediasphere

Jeffrey Lewis, Philip Pond, Robin Cameron, Belinda Lewis

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


The concept of ‘social cohesion’ has become an orthodoxy in governmental and academic discourse, augmenting the complex of progressive and liberal politics that have formed around the modern, multicultural and globally engaged nation-state. The reinvigoration of far-right politics is challenging this orthodoxy, at least inasmuch as these politics appear to be gaining traction through the strategic manipulation of increasing insecurity within these democratic states. This article examines these challenges conceptually and through an empirical case study. The case study examines the appearance in 2016 of Senator Elect Pauline Hanson on the ABC’s Q&A television programme. The article examines Twitter discourses that were generated around the far-right senator’s appearance on the broadcast programme. The article concludes that ‘social cohesion’ and its role in electoral, participative and deliberative democratic processes is a largely inadequate discursive buttress to the complex of language wars within which the concept is besieged.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)958-978
Number of pages21
JournalEuropean Journal of Cultural Studies
Issue number5-6
Publication statusPublished - 1 Oct 2019


  • Media democracy
  • multiculturalism
  • right-wing extremism
  • social cohesion
  • transculturalism
  • Twitter

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