Date of Degree

5-2018

Document Type

Thesis

Degree Name

M.A.

Program

Liberal Studies

Advisor(s)

Till Weber

Subject Categories

Communication Technology and New Media | Gender, Race, Sexuality, and Ethnicity in Communication | Other Sociology | Social Media

Keywords

Twitter, Roma, Romani, Italy, otherization

Abstract

Italy is known for hostile treatment of the Roma, one of the largest ethnic minority groups in Europe. This paper seeks to understand what is causing Italians to talk negatively about the Roma on Twitter. Statistical analysis is performed utilizing the data mined from Twitter along with other variables. The study finds that Roma population, foreign population, and number of refugees all have significant effects on the total number of tweets or the average negative sentiment of tweets. The results indicate that native Italians may group minority groups all together and regard them as “others”. Although the research design has some flaws in the data mining and sentiment analysis process, the study shows promise. I suggest that social scientists utilize social media data to analyze social or cultural phenomena.

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