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Beatriz Buarque

Doctoral researcher | Teaching Assistant University of Manchester | Fellow of Advance HE

alt-right | conspiracy theories | digital media | multilevel critical affect-discourse analysis

 
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About me

BEATRIZ BY BEATRIZ

I was born in the suburbs of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, and my love for Politics started in my childhood. When I was 8 years old, I used to ask people what were their choices for the elections and, trust me, I used to question their choices. I was always curious about the reasons that motivated somebody to vote for the candidate A instead of candidates B, C, D. Theoretically speaking, I was always interested in the discourse. In the performance of some discourses. For many years, this passion was somehow silenced and when I started taking action against hate speech, I felt it was time to go back to academia to understand how the internet has changed not only the way we communicate, but also how power is made. 

As a researcher and communicator, I am committed to making a contribution to existing knowledge about the alt-right and providing students with a learning experience that cultivates critical thinking in an empowering way. 

After all, critical thinking and creativity work well together!

 

PROFESSIONAL BIOGRAPHY

Beatriz Buarque is a PhD student and journalist who is investigating why and how alt-right conspiracy theories have been legitimised in online spaces.  Her project draws upon the theory of the multitude and post-structuralist theories broadly construed and relies on an innovative methodology designed by her called multilevel critical affect-discourse analysis. Beatriz aims at pursuing an academic career in Politics or Communication with a special emphasis on interdisciplinary approaches. 

 

 Besides her work as a researcher and teaching assistant at the University of Manchester, Beatriz is also the founder of the award-winning British NGO Words Heal the World, which empowers young people from different nationalities to challenge online hate speech and tackle different types of extremism. Words Heal the World is the recipient of two international prizes: Transcendence Award (granted by Michigan State University, USA) in June 2019 and the 2020 Luxembourg Peace Prize.

DEGREES

Masters of Arts with distinction - MA International Relations and Security (University of Westminster, UK)

Bachelor in Social Communication (Journalism) - Federal University of Rio de Janeiro (UFRJ), Brazil

LANGUAGES

English [Spoken:Fluent/Native, Written: Fluent/Native]

Spanish [Spoken:Fluent/Native, Written: Fluent/Native]

Portuguese [Spoken:Fluent/Native, Written: Fluent/Native]

French [Spoken: Intermediate, Written: Intermediate]

Italian [Spoken: Basic /Working Knowledge, Written: Working Knowledge]

Experience

September 2019 - Now

Doctoral researcher - Politics

(University of Manchester)

Under the supervision of Dr Martin Coward and Dr Andreja Zevnik, I'm using a multidisciplinary approach and mixed methods to investigate the legitimisation of alt-right conspiracy theories across different digital media platforms. I´m particularly interested in understanding how novel claims of authority that have arisen with digital media have been used to give conspiracy theories an appearance of legitimate truth. 

The research entitled "Alt-right multitudes: how and why alt-right conspiracy theories have been legitimised in digital spaces" focuses its attention on the commonalities that have given shape to the alternative right: conspiracy theories constructed around the belief that the white/western race is in danger (cultural marxism, white genocide, great replacement, deep state) and their associated affects (with a special emphasis on fear).

May 2021 - Now

Digital assistant
(Review of International Studies)

As a digital assistant for the Journal Review of International Studies published by Cambridge University Press, I am responsible for building its online presence across different social media networks (Twitter, Facebook). My tasks involve the production of social media content and the development of campaigns to engage internet users with its contents in a creative and effective way. 

May 2021 - June 2021

Editing teacher

(King's College London)

As an editing teacher at King's College London, I am marking 20 essays (4,000 words each) for the optional module Digital Industries and Internet Culture (Digital Economy MSc).

September 2019 - January 2021

TA International Relations and Politics  (University of Manchester)

As a Teaching Assistant, I planned, designed, and delivered ten tutorials to four groups of students who were enrolled at the largest course in the UK of Introduction to International Politics (according to the Oxford University Press). 

Drawing upon the work of John Dewey and Paulo Freire, my tutorials were specially designed to give students a learning experience that facilitates the understanding of IR theories through contemporary examples brought to class by them. Despite the adversities caused by the Pandemic, I used different online resources to engage with students (Zoom and Piazza), sending them opportunities to attend youth events online and also mental health channels made available by the university.

As part of my duties as a TA, I also marked over 70 annotated bibliographies (using a rubric) and essays. I was given training on how to use TurnitinUK and I used its tools to give detailed feedback to students on their final essay.

October 2018 - Now

CEO & Founder

 Words Heal the World

Through the methodology called Educ-(ac)tion, I have trained undergraduate and Masters students from the  UK, Brazil, Argentina, Colombia, Mexico, and Ecuador to use their skills to challenge online hate speech and develop strategies to tackle different types of extremism.

I designed the syllabus of the volunteering programme and I have also supervised students' activities such as articles based on academic papers, the production of short documentaries and social media campaigns. As part of my duties at Words Heal the World, I am also responsible for the induction training provided to our volunteers, which aims at cultivating critical thinking about issues related to hate speech, digital media, and extremism. 

Words Heal the World is a non-profit limited company registered in the UK (Registration number: 11601612).

August 2007 - October 2018

Senior editor

Globo TV (Rio de Janeiro, Brazil)

Experience in searching for exclusive stories, writing, and editing pieces for the morning newscast and different TV shows. Coordinated groups of more than 15 people in some special coverages and TV shows.

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MAFTI is an international group of scholars set up by me in April/2021 to map far-right media vehicles /think tanks / political schools, while examining the content produced by them.

Currently, I am in charge of examining the far-right truth industry in the UK as well as coordinating a team of six scholars who are covering the industry in the Netherlands, Germany, Italy, France, Russia, and Hungary.


During the mapping exercise, we aim at identifying: links between such institutions and political parties; discursive strategies; geographical and social network trends.

Projects
Publications

 

Articles

Allington, D., Buarque, B. L. and Barker Flores, D. (2021) ‘Antisemitic conspiracy fantasy in the age of digital media: Three ‘conspiracy theorists’ and their YouTube audiences’, Language and Literature. doi: 10.1177/0963947020971997.

Buarque, B. (2018). From the battlefield to the ideological war: the story of a foreign fighter who nowadays prevents radicalisation”. Malala, 6(9), 22-28. http:// www.revistas.usp.br/malala/article/view/148421/142088

Buarque, B. (2016). The violence against Yezidi women: the Islamic State´s sexual slavery system. Malala, 4(6), 43-56.

http://dx.doi.org/10.11606/issn.2446-5240.malala.2016.122158

 

Book chapters

 

Buarque, B. (2019). Breaking the vicious circle in the age of spectacle terrorism: the Words Heal the World project”. In Piazza, G. (eds.)  Global Crisis: Local Voices. London: IJOPEC.

 

Buarque, B. (2018). Counter Extremism Project: a informação a serviço da paz. In Victor, C., Goktepe, M., Chiachiri, R., Elemen, Y. (eds.) Posições diante do terrorismo: religiões-intelectuais-mídias. São Paulo: Labrador.

Blogs

Buarque, B. (March 3rd, 2021). How Brazil's far-right 'active' knowledge industry supports Jair Bolsonaro. 

https://www.opendemocracy.net/en/democraciaabierta/jair-bolsonaro-brazil-far-right-knowledge-industry-en/

Buarque, B. (April 17, 2020). An anti-Semitic wave may hit the world in the aftermath of the pandemic.  

https://www.opendemocracy.net/en/democraciaabierta/anti-semitic-wave-may-hit-world-aftermath-pandemic/

Reports

Words Heal the World (2020). The Hate Map of Brazil.

https://www.wordshealtheworld.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/01/HATE-MAP-OF-BRAZIL-REPORT-2019.pdf

Words Heal the World (2019). The Hate Map of Brazil. 

https://www.wordshealtheworld.com/ wp-content/uploads/2019/10/HATE-MAP-OF-BRAZIL-REPORT-1.pdf

Events / Other activities

Workshops

07/04/2021: (POR) Um olhar sobre a ascensão da direita radical no século XXI. I presented my transdisciplinary approach to the analysis of the radical right on a workshop organised by the Centre of Sustainable Development (CDS) from the University of Brasilia (UnB). My presentation can be accessed here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QfeFO9fp-ac&list=PLWzwVQhkEcOGYrLlHARRUea_vqHlqzAU4

From student to student: sharing skills to challenge hate: workshop designed by me to be delivered by undergraduate students to high school students as a means to empower teenagers to use social media to challenge hate speech.

18/11/2020: The impacts of conspiracy theories during the Covid19 pandemic: Workshop organised by me as part of the activities planned by the research cluster Critical Global Politics based at the University of Manchester. Guest speakers: Dr Karen Douglas (University of Kent), Dr Jaron Harambam (KU Leuven), and Dr Daniel Allington (King's College London).

Reviewer

Reviewed an article for the journal Ethnic and Racial Studies.

AWARDS

Fellowship of Advance HIgher Education (FHEA)

I have been awarded Fellow  of Advance HE in June/2021, confirming my commitment to excellence in teaching and learning while incorporating my research within academic practices 

ACADEMIC: FCDO CHEVENING

(United Kingdom)

I received £27,910 from the prestigious scholarship programme FCDO Chevening to complete my Masters in the UK in 2017

TRANSCENDENCE AWARD

Michigan State University (USA)

I was awarded the Transcendence Award on behalf of Words Heal the World for our efforts to empower young people to challenge hate speech in 2019

ACADEMIC: UNIVERSITY OF MANCHESTER

(United Kingdom)

I am the recipient of the prestigious studentship offered by the Politics Department of the University of Manchester to investigate the legitimatisation of alt-right conspiracy theories in online spaces

LUXEMBOURG PEACE PRIZE

(Luxembourg)

The Luxembourg Peace Prize, an initiative from the Schengen Peace Foundation, recognized the efforts made by Words Heal the World to promote peace in 2020

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