The browser you are using is not supported by this website. All versions of Internet Explorer are no longer supported, either by us or Microsoft (read more here:

Please use a modern browser to fully experience our website, such as the newest versions of Edge, Chrome, Firefox or Safari etc.

Media Portrayals of Protests : A Discursive Analysis of Newspaper Articles on Gilet Jaune protests in France


  • Matilda Nilsson Morris

Summary, in English

The way conflicts are understood depends on how identities are conveyed through media. Newspapers’ reports of the Gilets Jaunes protests in France during the autumn 2018 are no exception. One factor that can influence which choices are made in describing identity, is the distance between the place of publication and the location of events. Articles from Le Figaro and The Times are analysed using discourse theory and methods based on the work of Laclau and Mouffe. This creates an understanding of the way distance influences how identities are communicated. Identities and phenomena with major roles in the articles include “the Gilets Jaunes”, “Macron” and “Social Media”. The words chosen to signify them reveal whether their designated position in the discourse, as well as potential antagonisms or changes to identity. While both newspapers mention similar aspects of the protests, they are understood as part of a French political discourse through the articles of The Times, mainly due to their focus on Macron’s identity, whereas in Le Figaro, the protests are more often compared to populist movements in other countries. This incorporates the Gilet Jaune protests in a contemporary global discourse concerning populism. Consequently, this can be understood as an effect of dislocation of current hegemonic discourse in both countries, causing newspapers to externalise the revolts to discourses not concerning the country of publication.


Publishing year




Document type

Student publication for Bachelor's degree


  • Languages and Literatures


  • Populism
  • Social Media
  • Journalism
  • Identity
  • French Democracy
  • Gilets Jaunes
  • protests


  • Tomas Sniegon