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Mobilizing pity : the dialectics of narrative production and erasure in the case of Iran’s #BlueGirl

Shahrokni, Nazanin and Sofos, Spyros A. LU (2021) In Globalizations
Abstract

In this article we present a case analysis of Sahar Khodayari’s transformation into a global injustice icon, the #BlueGirl, after she set herself ablaze outside a courthouse in Tehran, Iran, allegedly in protest against the ban on women entering football stadiums. We focus on the ways in which ‘pity’ was generated, mobilized, and transformed into indignation against the Iranian state by digital activists. Drawing on the literature on the politics of pity, we explore the creation of a global icon, the #BlueGirl, draw attention to the gendered elements of Sahar Khodayari’s iconization, and take a closer look at the mobilization of affect mechanisms set in motion. The article suggests that the politics of pity rests on a chain of erasures... (More)

In this article we present a case analysis of Sahar Khodayari’s transformation into a global injustice icon, the #BlueGirl, after she set herself ablaze outside a courthouse in Tehran, Iran, allegedly in protest against the ban on women entering football stadiums. We focus on the ways in which ‘pity’ was generated, mobilized, and transformed into indignation against the Iranian state by digital activists. Drawing on the literature on the politics of pity, we explore the creation of a global icon, the #BlueGirl, draw attention to the gendered elements of Sahar Khodayari’s iconization, and take a closer look at the mobilization of affect mechanisms set in motion. The article suggests that the politics of pity rests on a chain of erasures that deprive the pitiable other of their agency, history and historicity, and erase the global conditions that contribute to the suffering of the former, thus, localizing responsibility and instituting western moral hierarchies.

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author
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organization
publishing date
type
Contribution to journal
publication status
epub
subject
keywords
feminist activism, gender, iconization, Iran, mobilization, Politics of pity
in
Globalizations
publisher
Routledge
external identifiers
  • scopus:85099475340
ISSN
1474-7731
DOI
10.1080/14747731.2020.1864963
language
English
LU publication?
yes
id
db10efeb-0cf9-4a23-8df2-f965485c775c
date added to LUP
2021-01-29 11:30:59
date last changed
2021-02-02 01:23:01
@article{db10efeb-0cf9-4a23-8df2-f965485c775c,
  abstract     = {<p>In this article we present a case analysis of Sahar Khodayari’s transformation into a global injustice icon, the #BlueGirl, after she set herself ablaze outside a courthouse in Tehran, Iran, allegedly in protest against the ban on women entering football stadiums. We focus on the ways in which ‘pity’ was generated, mobilized, and transformed into indignation against the Iranian state by digital activists. Drawing on the literature on the politics of pity, we explore the creation of a global icon, the #BlueGirl, draw attention to the gendered elements of Sahar Khodayari’s iconization, and take a closer look at the mobilization of affect mechanisms set in motion. The article suggests that the politics of pity rests on a chain of erasures that deprive the pitiable other of their agency, history and historicity, and erase the global conditions that contribute to the suffering of the former, thus, localizing responsibility and instituting western moral hierarchies.</p>},
  author       = {Shahrokni, Nazanin and Sofos, Spyros A.},
  issn         = {1474-7731},
  language     = {eng},
  month        = {01},
  publisher    = {Routledge},
  series       = {Globalizations},
  title        = {Mobilizing pity : the dialectics of narrative production and erasure in the case of Iran’s #BlueGirl},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/14747731.2020.1864963},
  doi          = {10.1080/14747731.2020.1864963},
  year         = {2021},
}