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Digital diaspora, reinvigorating indigenous identity and online activism: social media and the reorientation of Rotuman identity

Titifanue, Jason and Varea, Rufino and Varea, Renata and Kant, Romitesh and Finau, Glen (2018) Digital diaspora, reinvigorating indigenous identity and online activism: social media and the reorientation of Rotuman identity. Media International Australia, 169 (1). pp. 32-42. ISSN 1329-878X

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Abstract

The island of Rotuma in Fiji poses a paradox. Indigenous Fijians make up more than 60% of Fiji’s population. However, as a unique ethnic group, Rotumans are a demographic minority, with their language listed on the UNESCO list of endangered languages. This is caused by extensive outmigration, with more than 80% of Rotumans residing outside of Rotuma. Recently, Rotuman migrants have heavily relied on Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs) and new media, as tools for reinvigorating culture, rekindling familial ties and being a platform for political discourse on Rotuman issues. Facebook has been increasingly employed by Rotumans to inform and educate themselves and their networks on the implications of two bills introduced in Fiji’s Parliament in 2015, which impact Rotuma in terms of its land and customs. This article examines how Rotumans have innovatively used social media to reinvigorate culture and how this has evolved to take on an increasingly political dimension.

Item Type: Journal Article
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HM Sociology
Divisions: Faculty of Science, Technology and Environment (FSTE) > School of Geography, Earth Science and Environment
Faculty of Business and Economics (FBE) > School of Government, Development and International Affairs
Depositing User: Jason Titifanue
Date Deposited: 21 Feb 2019 13:46
Last Modified: 21 Feb 2019 13:46
URI: http://repository.usp.ac.fj/id/eprint/11112
UNSPECIFIED

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