The striking synchronicity with which Great Awokening terminology increased in news media worldwide
To me this is part of a broader trend of global *aesthetic* convergence (see here for an exploration https://www.alexmurrell.co.uk/articles/the-age-of-average).
The way journalists write about issues, and which issues they choose to report on, is being influenced by the Western, and especially American, zeitgeist. I suspect this is not due to any objective, global uptick in actual prejudice nor any structural dynamics that might be present in each of the counties mentioned.
Nice work, David. I think you'll find much starker effects looking at "systemic racism" than just racism. That construct or abstraction is substantively essential to the new leftist ideology that swept our institutions and media in the last few years. Basically, the ideology of the academic left replaced mainstream leftist, née "liberal", ideology. Also, "structural racism/oppression", though I think systemic is more common. This is core to CRT, critical theory generally, Marxism, etc.
Another suggestion to get at bias is to look for whether terms are quoted or not. For example, you'll find newspaper articles in the 1990s, maybe later, where systemic racism is wrapped in quotes, which it should be since it's a proprietary leftist construct that is fully contested in terms of existing or describing reality re: black or brown people in the US in 2023 (I think conservatives, libertarians, and some leftists would find use for the term to describe discrimination against Asians in college admissions, possibly white kids as well).
Media that use ideological constructs as *descriptive* are profoundly biased and unprofessional. It's the difference between referring to systemic racism just taking for granted that it's real, much less the cause of some outcome (as asserted in leftist ideology), as opposed to quoting it and saying that these people claim "systemic racism" is the cause of XYZ.
You'll also find outlets like the NYT wrapping transgender in quotes in 1995, probably later as well. It's a new, synthetic ideological construct, so that's appropriate. So tracking media wrapping leftist ideological constructs in quotes, and then no longer doing that, would be an interesting way to trace their radicalization.
And using fake clinical-sounding pathology terms like transphobic, homophobic, Islamophobic, etc. to label a human being merits special attention and condemnation, especially if it's just for mundane disagreement or non-compliance with leftist ideology (like noting that there are two sexes, or opposing men crashing women's sports). All these outlets that do it should be excoriated, and we need to build online tools and databases that document it, and hold them to account. So use of x-phobic specifically might be worth teasing apart from x-phobia, especially if you can determine that it's been applied as a label for a specific person. These terms aren't actually "prejudice types" as far as anyone knows – they're non-existent, fake clinical-sounding pathology terms created by political ideologues to smear dissenters. So their use in media isn't like racism, and is inherently biased – in my view it should be called out specially.
I don't think islamic countries disliking "islamophobia" should be interpreted as wokeness.
Reporting all values normalized unfortunately causes issues with the analysis. To illustrate, "racism" only entered the popular lexicon beginning around the Civil Rights Era, so when you exclude 40 years of "racism"'s incubation by beginning your analysis at year 2000, the fold-change in America during the Obama years seems modest, even though it represents an increase from a very high baseline. By contrast, most of Europe in the year 2000 was overwhelmingly White, not particularly concerned with racial issues whatsoever. With nothing better to report on than American news, "racism" in Sweden goes from near-zero in 2011 to orders-of-magnitude greater on the basis of Trayvon Martin/Michael Brown/BLM alone.
Just look at how much higher the "noise" (hump around 2005-ish for many countries) vs the "signal" ("Great Awokening" spike in 2010's) is. This is how-to-manipulate-data 101.
So I'm guessing from these graphs that Sweden or Canada led off the Great Awokening.
What can the underlying driver (not a cause but an enabler) be other than social networking/media?
Great work. Since you use “synchronicity”, a Jungian term, it takes a small step to connect all this with the collective unconscious. As language is indicative of psychological state, in fact your work may be proof of collective trauma and archetypes constellated. It goes back on #metoo, and seems Anima related.
Anyone care to speculate on what may be driving this?
the question becomes why? why are some countries more woke or lead the way than others? Income? Gini index? Egalitarianism? Race? previous history of communism? race (association with European "race"; homogeneous countries?)
Once you understand this as an example of PMC class consciousness and pmc class hegemony, all will be revealed.
Note how none of this affects the way the economic pie is sliced.
Rising affluence post 2008 coupled with years of takeover of educational institutions by the left and the election of Obama created this in the U.S. The luxury of not having to worry about money, the decades long indoctrinations in schools, and the need to show that race, sexuality, etc. issues still existed, despite Obama and globalists winning, created the perfect storm for the awokening to happen. Obama needed to convince people that just because a black man became President didn’t mean all this bad stuff wasn’t going on. He and the rest of the globalists needed boogeymen to go after to get the people agitated, despite the prosperity and largely peaceful existence. Add climate change to this analysis and you have completed he picture.
Can someone please remind me when the Occupy Wall Street protests started?
A nightmare tracked from the conscious realm. I wonder what data on witchcraft would have looked like in 1600 or slavery in 100 ad or human sacrifice in 1500 bc
Straight off the top of my head…the reason it appears to be synchronised is for the same reason 180 out of around 196 countries did the same thing in March 2020, because they were told to.
A much needed (and outstanding) analysis of this phenomena. Bravo!
I will indirectly cross-post this in a mini-post I will submit a bit later today in my Substack.
A few OBSERVATIONS:
- Your Conclusion "suggests the existence of powerful underlying social dynamics at play." As most of the media is corporate-controlled with agendas to push, your analysis highlights the sheer amount of SOCIAL ENGINEERING that is taking place to manipulate the thoughts and perceptions of the masses. This is nothing new and has been going on for decades (like I reported on re NYT & the CFR as one example, see https://fournier.substack.com/p/why-society-needs-conspiracy-theories). Much of this SE involves fomenting fear, anger, doubt, and especially DIVISION. It's all part of a broader divide-and-conquer, distraction mechanism to draw the masses away from those who are looting them and wish for their extinction, imo.
- I recognize that my country, CANADA, is high on the "hit list" for this nefarious stratagem and that its highly-funded state media (CBC et al) are all-too complicit in this affair.
- Having lived in CHINA for 13 years until late 2021, I can absolutely confirm what you wrote that in the East and China in particular, such Prejudice terms, unlike in the West, are used differently, i.e., to "criticize or mock the alleged prejudice in the West." Bingo! Exactly what I observed in my decade+ in China. Just look at the headlines and articles of China Daily and their Wechat posts over the past decade and you will have 100% confirmation of this, for almost all of those articles and posts were used to disparage the U.S. and other Western countries.
SUGGESTION for continued research:
- FUNDING: Can you look into who has increasingly funded these media outlets that you focused on for your global study? I strongly suspect that many would be the likes of George Soros Open Society Foundation, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Rockefeller Foundation, and those usual culprits that are still highly enmeshed in modern Eugenics. I am so sure of this, I will publicly bet you ahead of time US$100 dollars that this is the case (i.e., that there is a significant statistical correlation). If you wish to take the bet and do the study, let me know here and now.
Thanks again for this stellar quantitative analysis work!
I think some imporvements could be made to this methodology. This appears to largely be based on English-language media, even in non-English-speaking countries. E.g. Jakarta Post in Indonesia, which easily has one of the lowest circulations and readerships among Indonesians. Similar to this is the use of China Daily in China. So, what would be good to see in the refinement of the study would be control for terminology across different languages, and an analysis of the non-English outlets. In addition, a study of the existing outlets should also control for the use of syndication services, e.g. AFP, AP, Reuters, etc., which will generally appear across multiple news outlets in different countries, and, depending on the desk, using a local translation. So, if there's a story about homophobia in the United States, and that is syndicated several times to 10 different territories, how should that be accounted for in the study design?