’’Todo lo que nos une, nos separa’’ : Argentina versus Brazil as portrayed by Argentine print media coverage of the 2014 World Cup

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Title: ’’Todo lo que nos une, nos separa’’ : Argentina versus Brazil as portrayed by Argentine print media coverage of the 2014 World Cup
Author: Ullom, Andrew William
Other contributor: Helsingin yliopisto, Humanistinen tiedekunta, Maailman kulttuurien laitos
University of Helsinki, Faculty of Arts, Department of World Cultures
Helsingfors universitet, Humanistiska fakulteten, Institutionen för världens kulturer
Publisher: Helsingfors universitet
Date: 2016
Language: eng
URI: http://urn.fi/URN:NBN:fi:hulib-201605231755
Thesis level: master's thesis
Discipline: Area and Cultural Studies, Latin American studies
Alue- ja kulttuurintutkimus, Latinalaisen Amerikan tutkimus
Region- och kulturstudier, Latinamerikansk forskning
Abstract: This thesis explores representations of Brazil in Argentine print media coverage of the 2014 World Cup. In Argentina, and generally throughout Latin America as a whole, the game of football transcends the boundary of sport and has a significant effect on a societal level. Therefore, what is said within the context of sport can be then analyzed as potentially having significance on a more expansive, profound level. This thesis analyzes statements and portrayals of Brazil made within the context of a sporting competition-the 2014 World Cup- and examines if and how these statements cast Brazil as an inferior Other to Argentina. Theoretically, this thesis uses Edward Said’s Orientalism as a starting point with which to explore how an opposing group can be represented in such a way as to dominate it. Negatively stereotyping and essentializing an opposing group, as outlined by Said in Orientalism is applied to the Latin American context with the help of previous works by Latin American social scientists who have previously decontextualized Said’s work from the Orient and applied it specifically to the case of Argentina and Brazil. With his concept of ‘’banal nationalism’’, Michael Billig describes a type of nationalism which is almost constant and nearly undetectable. This proved highly relevant in relation to Argentine coverage of the World Cup, and also provides a theoretical basis for this thesis. Fieldwork was carried out in Buenos Aires, Argentina in 2014, where ethnographic fieldnotes and print media articles were collected, and semi-structured interviews were conducted. Qualitative content analysis and the application of coding frames to the collected print articles allow for the content of hundreds of articles to be reduced to pertinent reoccurring themes, which are then analyzed in relation to the research questions of this thesis. Within the data several reoccurring trends are found which contribute to the identity of a dominant or superior Argentina and a weak Brazil. Dominant and militaristic language, referred to as ‘’colonizing discourse’’ within this thesis, is employed to describe the interaction Argentine fans have with Brazilians and Brazilian space during the 2014 World Cup. The trend of speaking for the other by defining their mental state and applying negative emotional characteristics to the entire populations of Brazilian cities or even the entire country itself is also found, and it is argued that the assignation of negative emotions or a damaged psyche casts Brazil as weak, and thus, Argentina as strong.
Subject: football
World Cup

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