Proceedings of The 3rd World Conference on Social Sciences Studies
Constructing Identity and Ideological Stance in Oduduwa Secessionist Discourse on Twitter
PraiseGod Aminu and Innocent Chiluwa
The Oduduwa secessionist agitators are a group of social actors, consisting mainly of Yorubas, with the resolution of seceding Nigeria. Meanwhile, in spite of their reminder that Nigeria’s nationhood is still highly contested, there appears to be very little or no linguistic research on discourses produced by this emerging group of activists. This study, therefore, analyses the Oduduwa agitators’ tweets in order to uncover their prevailing ideologies and highlight their strategies for representing themselves and those they oppose. An analytical and qualitative research design is used to interpret the data selected. From the corpus of 10,000 tweets on Oduduwa secessionist agitators, 70 tweets are purposively selected and analysed in this study. With insights from van Dijk’s (2011) model of Critical Discourse Analysis, findings reveal that Oduduwa secessionists’ Twitter posts (tweets) are protest discourses, with positive ‘we’ in-group representations and negative ‘they’ out-group constructions imprinted on them. The agitators apply linguistic strategies such as code-switching, foregrounding and hashtags to express their solidarity as well as establish social interaction. The study concludes that Oduduwa secessionist agitators’ tweets are effectively used to describe the identities of the actors, express their arguments and demands, enunciate their activities and goals, and offer information updates to the agitators and supporters.
keywords: Identity, Oduduwa agitators, secession, Twitter.