More Than A Woman: A Critical Discourse Analysis of Cyber Misogyny towards Women in Politics on Facebook
More than a Woman: A Critical Discourse Analysis of Cyber Misogyny towards Women in Politics on Facebook
The 2022 national elections highlighted the persistent dominance of men in Philippine politics. As the study claims that misogyny plays a part in the lack of female representation in politics, it also acknowledges the huge obstacle it posed to women when it was transferred to a digital vessel due to the emergence of social media and its convergence to politics. This study explores the forms and manifestations of cyber misogyny toward female politicians on Facebook. We utilized both Norman Fairclough’s Critical Discourse Analysis and Corpus-based Discourse Analysis to examine how the public perceives Leni Robredo as a woman in politics by analyzing various posts and comments from selected Facebook pages containing gendered disinformation about her. The findings show that the dataset contains linguistic forms and patterns that seek to shame and discredit the female politician in Robredo because of the established belief of women’s weakness, less intellectual disposition, and professional inferiority. The way in which these attacks are produced and distributed also exposed the prevailing political machinery built against Robredo, which enabled the public to construct negative perceptions about her. The findings further revealed that the underrepresentation of women in politics is exacerbated by men’s resistance to their participation, with women finding greater acceptance only when they adhere to the patriarchal norms of this macho-feudal society. Therefore, the study concludes that when longstanding societal, cultural, and political structures are unchallenged and male leaders are empowered to uphold gender-based inequalities and bigotry, women in politics remain to be targets of threats, intimidation, violence, and scorn.
Critical Discourse Analysis, Corpus Linguistics, Cyber Misogyny, Gendered Disinformation