Hate Speech or Voice from Minority? – Media’s Dilemma under Multicultural Pressure


This research is both an effort to examine the mass communication discourse on hate speech incidents and to draw a rough map of some of the landscape of recent argumentation. This landscape may give clearer view on the complex structure of racism which is a compound of ethnocentrism fundamentally caused by jus sanguinis (Latin: right of blood) law of Japan and neo-conservative xenophobia. A recent Japanese proliferation of street protests using hate speech against ethnic minorities draws worldwide attention. Most of the protests appear to have been organized by a vocal new group; Zaitokukai. It is a commonly shared image that its members to be young Japanese men who feel alienated by personal failures as an inability to get a stable corporate job and then take out their resulting frustration by blaming foreigners. Taking close look on the media discourse on hate speech demonstrated the mass media articulated victims and the counter groups of hate speech too as marginalized minorities while the media coverage on hate speech tend to give racist group a position of minority activist group. Portraying the hate speech by the racist group as a result of a more and more stratified society potentially invites the consequent of multiculturalism dilemma: the ignorance of the majority. Positioning the racist group as another alienated minority voice group and abbreviating their hate speech to a form of identity politics leads to overlook the the sign that their xenophobia has been developing to discourse of ethnic cleansing.

Author Information
Yoshie Niijima, Keio University, Japan

Paper Information
Conference: ECCS2015
Stream: Media Studies

This paper is part of the ECCS2015 Conference Proceedings (View)
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Posted by James Alexander Gordon