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Propaganda som vapen: En analys av Islamiska Statens propagandafilmer utifrån teorier om social identitet och propaganda
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Theology, Department of Theology, The Social Sciences of Religion, Sociology of Religions.
2016 (Swedish)Independent thesis Basic level (degree of Bachelor), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

The purpose of this essay was to examine Islamic State’s (IS) self-image and perception of their enemies, and also what kind of propaganda technique that they use in their movies. To do so three questions were formulated:

1. According to Social Identity Theory the ingroup’s social identity is the same as the ingroup’s prototype. How is IS’s prototype portrayed, and thus their social identity, in the movies Flames of War and Clanging of the Swords IV?

2. According to Social Identity Theory a consequence of group membership is that the ingroup will associate outgroups with stereotypic images. What stereotypic images does IS’s associate outgroups with in the movies Flames of War and Clanging of the Swords IV?

3. According to Jacques Ellul propaganda can be categorized as either rational or irrational. So, based on his definition of propaganda, what kind of propaganda technique is used in Flames of War and Clanging of the Swords IV ?

In this paper four segments were analyzed from two of IS’s movies: Flames of War and Clanging of the Swords IV. Two theories were used in this essay: Ellul’s theory on rational and irrational propaganda, and also Social Identity Theory. The first theory presents different techniques of argumentation that can be classified as either rational or irrational propaganda. The second theory describes the phenomenon known as prototype and stereotype. The most common propaganda technique used in the movies was that of social evidence, which is a rational strategy of propaganda. This means that the propaganda mainly uses symbols in its arguments, which in this case is the symbol of Allah. IS uses Allah, as well as their leader Al-Baghdadi, to justify their actions. Irrational propaganda is also used quite often. It can be seen in the way IS describes their own group and their enemies. IS always describes themselves with positive attributes and characteristics, while their enemies are described as their complete opposite. The purpose of this is to make the viewer automatically start to associate the ingroup (IS) as good and the outgroups (enemies) as evil. The prototype of IS is that they see themselves as the holy warriors of Allah executing His will on earth. The stereotypic image of IS’s enemies is that they are apostates and enemies of Allah. Their infidelity has provoked Allah, they’re sinners and thus IS considers it to be their duty to punish them.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2016. , 48 p.
Keyword [en]
Islamic State, Social Identity Theory, Rational Propaganda, Irrational Propaganda, Qualitative Media Analysis, Flames of War, Clanging of the Swords IV
National Category
Religious Studies
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-302581OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-302581DiVA: diva2:958278
Subject / course
Sociology of Religion
Available from: 2016-09-08 Created: 2016-09-06 Last updated: 2016-09-08Bibliographically approved

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