Optimism or Pessimism: should this be a dilemma?

Why are people in some of the richest countries in the world dissatisfied about their daily existences, while a large set of economic and social data show growing unprecedented material progresses? What are the sources of anxiety and pessimism that translated into populism and worsening mental health? Are we, despite the massive gains in material progress in recent decades, living in an age of insecurity? Things are bad, and it …

8M – Feminism is here

Throughout these weeks I have made a brief review of different movements directly related to the struggle for the rights and freedoms of women. There could be no better way to end this “series” than to take a look at Women’s Day. To do this, we will make a global vision of this day in the world panorama and we will focus on the case of Spain, one of the …

When Algiers reminds Cairo

“Algeria wants change” has been resonating in Didouche Mourad Avenue and Audin Square, in downtown Algiers, for the past two weeks. To ignite this wave of social unrest that spreaded through the country has been the announcement of Algeria’s ruling party, National Front of Liberation (FNL) to candidate for his fifth term current President Abdellaziz Bouteflika. The 81-year-old president has ruled the country since 1999 and seeks a new term …

HeForShe: feminism, UN and Emma Watson

One of the doubts that arise in the world of cooperation and international aid is the “use” of the image of celebrities as part of public relations and publicity strategies and campaigns. It is not uncommon for NGOs or international organizations to call on famous people to achieve greater reach, impact and recognition. It is true that they tend to take great care of the profile of that prescriber so …

Get it “right”: populism, social media and The League in Italy

Media and social media coverage are a crucial resource in modern politics. This topic has been extensively analysed as part of protest strategies of progressive movements, as exemplified by Indignados and Occupy Wall Street, as actors struggling to access office or aiming to influence the political mainstream through grassroots activism. Yet, in the era of populism and raising extremism, far-right discourses have been resonating across Facebook walls, Twitter newsfeeds and …

#NiUnaMenos: the seed growing

One of the hashtags that I would like to stop seeing on Social Media, in the news and in mobilizations around the world is #NiunaMenos. Unfortunately, the machismo suffered by women every day, without geographic distintion,  which is taken to the extreme in the form of a murderer, makes #NiunaMenos part of the “Trending Topics” related to the struggle of women. If you live in a Spanish-speaking country, it is …

The Genealogy of Gilets Jaunes: From Facebook lives to Les Champs Elysées

The Parisian riots of May 1968 were hatched in the city’s cafés, just like the ones in 1871. But the Gilets Jaunes movement has broken away from any historical precedent: for the very first time in France, a heterogeneous protest was born on social media before spilling out into the street.   The Gilets Jaunes movement is the longest-running protest in France since the second world war. It has lasted …

Handmaid’s tale protest: #dontletthebastardsgrindyoudown

Something that Margaret Atwood probably never imagined when she published her well-known novel “The Handmaid’s Tale” in 1985, was that it was going to become a cult series, and much less that it was going to be an inspiration for diverse protests of women around the world. From Ireland to the United States and Argentina, women have used the clothing of the series, red cloaks and white bonnets, as a …

People are the solution

This is the kickoff of The Fifth Estate blog. Welcome! This blog is part of a group activity for the Communication for Development Master Programme at Malmö University, Sweden. We are a team of three, living, working and blogging from different geographic areas. Via this blog, we would like to be the bridge that deepens into experiences in new media, activism, and development by reporting on key issues e.g. on social activism and …