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Music video covers, minoritised languages, and affective investments in the space of YouTube

  • Kati Dlaske (a1)

While interest in affective processes has led to an affective turn in cultural studies, in sociolinguistics this perspective has been given less attention. This study takes up the ‘lens of affect’ and directs it on two cases exemplifying the circulation of minoritised languages in new media spaces: music video covers from two minority-language contexts, Irish and Sámi, uploaded on YouTube. Combining recent theorising on affect with insights from sociolinguistic research, the study investigates how the YouTube users’ affective investments contribute to a (re)evaluation of the two minoritised languages, their speakers, and the related ethnic/national belongings, and how these investments are expressions of more or less banal nationalism, connected to the colonial histories of Ireland and Finland. The study illustrates how the social media operate as a catalyst of affective investments involved in an ethnolinguistic (re)ordering of languages and their speakers, at the intersection of ‘banal globalisation’ and ‘everyday nationalism’. (Minority languages, affect, discourse, social media, nationalism)*

Corresponding author
Address for correspondence: Kati Dlaske, University of Jyväskylä, Department of Languages, P.O. Box 35, FI-40014 University of Jyväskylä, Finland,
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I would like to extend a big thank you to members of Jyv ä skylä Discourse Hub and especially to the two anonymous reviewers, whose insightful and constructive comments substantially contributed to the improvement of earlier versions of this article. All remaining shortcomings are, of course, my own.

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