Refereed journal article or data article (A1)

(Dis)Belief in QAnon: Competing Hermeneutics in the 2020 U.S. Presidential Election

List of Authors: Butters Albion M.

Publisher: Filmiverkko ry

Place: Turku

Publication year: 2022

Journal: WiderScreen

Issue number: 3-4

eISSN: 1795-6161


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Among many disruptive events in the 2020 U.S. Presidential Election, the meta-conspiracy theory known as QAnon surged, intertwining politics and (quasi-)religious belief in ways that have yet to be fully understood. This article explores the power of deep memetic frames—namely, how we ideologically see the world and communicate that worldview—as a means used by certain individuals and amplified by politicians, including President Trump, to mobilize the voting public across party lines. It also reveals how representations of QAnon by the mainstream media played into the movement’s success. For QAnon followers, the election became a crossroads moment, a “Great Awakening” whereby one could identify as part of a collective insider movement. Examining the epistemological de/construction of truth in a media context and diverging hermeneutical approaches—faith and suspicion, respectively—the article argues for the importance of religion as a lens to better understand QAnon in a deeply polarized United States.

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Last updated on 2022-07-12 at 11:59