A1 Journal article (refereed)
Sociolinguistic upsets and people of color in social media performances (2022)

Leppänen, S., & Westinen, E. (2022). Sociolinguistic upsets and people of color in social media performances. International Journal of the Sociology of Language, 2022(275), 129-151. https://doi.org/10.1515/ijsl-2021-0047

JYU authors or editors

Publication details

All authors or editors: Leppänen, Sirpa; Westinen, Elina

Journal or series: International Journal of the Sociology of Language

ISSN: 0165-2516

eISSN: 1613-3668

Publication year: 2022

Publication date: 11/05/2022

Volume: 2022

Issue number: 275

Pages range: 129-151

Publisher: Walter de Gruyter GmbH

Publication country: Germany

Publication language: English

DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/ijsl-2021-0047

Publication open access: Not open

Publication channel open access:

Publication is parallel published (JYX): https://jyx.jyu.fi/handle/123456789/81000


Particularly since the refugee “reception crisis” in 2015, Finland has started transforming into a more diverse and multicultural society. These societal changes have also been accompanied by sociolinguistic change, as well as language ideological debates and tensions, often manifesting in explicitly racist and xenophobic bursts of upset. In this article, our focus is on social media as a space where such societal and sociolinguistic upsets are articulated and re-worked. Drawing on recent sociolinguistic and discourse analytic work on transformative and critical popular cultural practices in social media, and studies on rap and belonging, we discuss how, in a mediatized society such as Finland, social media serve as a forum for antagonism and conflict, but also as a site for ‘talking back’. As our illustrative cases, we investigate two heteroglossic social media performances by entertainers and artists of color. In our analysis, we will show how these performances highlight and contest ideological notions of the way particular language resources are considered a key to Finnishness, as well as their role in the racialization and othering of people of color.

Keywords: languages; ideologies; linguistic identity; multilingualism; diversity; multiculturalism; societal change; social media; online discussion; people of colour; ethnic groups; racism; attitudes; social conflicts; sociolinguistics

Free keywords: heteroglossia; people of color; performance; social media

Contributing organizations

Related projects

Ministry reporting: Yes

Reporting Year: 2022

Preliminary JUFO rating: 2

Last updated on 2023-23-01 at 10:03