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PhD Studentship - Misogynist Extremist Violence in the UK

Anglia Ruskin University - Faculty of Arts, Humanities, Education and Social Sciences

Qualification Type: PhD
Location: Chelmsford
Funding for: UK Students
Funding amount: £18,622 per year tax-free stipend (2023-24 rate).
Hours: Full Time
Placed On: 20th December 2023
Closes: 3rd March 2024
Reference: 546458
 

About ARU:
We are ranked in the world’s top 350 institutions in the 2022 Times Higher Education World University Rankings, and we are a global university transforming lives through innovative, inclusive and entrepreneurial education and research. Our research institutes and four faculties bridge scientific, technical and creative fields. We deliver impactful research which tackles pressing issues and makes a real difference to our communities. Our academic excellence has been recognised by the UK’s Higher Education funding bodies, with 16 of our research areas assessed as world-leading. In 2021, we were awarded the Queen’s Anniversary Prize for our world-leading music therapy work.

About the Role:
Anglia Ruskin University is inviting applications for a fully-funded Vice-Chancellor’s PhD Scholarship for a period of 36 months within the Policing Institute for the Eastern Region within the Faculty of Arts, Humanities, Education and Social Sciences.

Project Description:
Online extremism has become one of the most pressing issues in modern times. Recent research conducted within the UK Prevent early de-radicalisation scheme has shown that all Prevent referrals received (over the last 4 years) have been characterised by “a certain degree of online self-radicalisation” (Orofino, 2022). Non-violent extremist groups share the same ideological framework of the terror counterparts but they reject the use of violence. However, their ideology has proved to have detrimental effect on some individuals who have chosen to go down the terror-path. Several violent episodes have occurred over the last decade - mostly perpetrated by self-initiated individuals who were radicalised online, e.g. the misogynistic Plymouth shooting in 2021. These individuals usually start their path towards violence by accessing material posted by non-violent extremist groups who legally disseminate their ideas in the online space (Keatley, Knight, & Marono, 2021). However, the online presence of non-violent groups is often neglected in favour of an almost exclusive focus on more explicitly violent groups which hinders a deeper exploration of this threat and its effects both online and offline (Orofino and Allchorn 2023).

In light of this lacuna and the pressing importance of studying such groups, this PhD studentship involves a mixed-methods (i.e. qualitative and quantitative) deep dive into the online subcultures that act as a common denominator for most forms of violent extremism and terrorism – extreme misogyny (otherwise referred to as the Manosphere) in the UK (Hudson and Hodgson 2020; Kimmel, 2018). It aims to map the violent rhetoric of non-violent UK-based misogynistic groups and therefore the key threat markers that might suggest a tipping point towards violence. More precisely, this studentship has 3 potential areas of focus:

  1. The narratives leading segments of British population towards extreme misogyny.
  2. The role of vocal extreme misogynistic groups as triggers towards violent extremism.
  3. Deeper insights into “Inceldom” sub-cultures in specific online eco-systems.

The award is subject to the successful candidate meeting the studentship Terms and Conditions which can be found on our website (accessed by the 'Apply' button) alongside further information about the project: https://aru.ac.uk/research/postgraduate-research/vc-phd-scholarships and enquiries can be directed to phdscholarships@aru.ac.uk.

We are committed to safeguarding and promoting welfare of our staff and students and expect all staff to share this commitment.

We value diversity at ARU and welcome applications from all sections of the community.

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