The enemy narrative

How authoritarian regimes use Twitter to oppress public opinion, evidence from Flight PS752


  • Emad Rahmanian University of Tehran


strategic narratives, political narrative, social media, civic engagement, online political participation, Twitter, Iran


This research explores the Iranian state strategic narrative through Twitter after the flight 752 incident. 13517 tweets were scraped using the R program, 14 days after the incident. After refining the tweet pool, 4947 tweets were used to identify the state narratives. Thematic analysis and narrative analysis are integrated to obtain a multidimensional understanding. Four narratives are identified, the enemy narrative, the intimidation narrative, the threat narrative, and the fake news narrative. Narratives’ functions and structures are also discussed to present a better understanding of these state strategic narratives and how internet and social media is used against civil society.


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