Mining Twitter Data to Identify Topics of Discussion by Indian Feminist Activists

Brief by the Center on Gender Equity and Health at the University of California at San Diego (UC San Diego): “Over the past decade, social media platforms have become ubiquitous, serving as a democratic space for activism and providing new opportunities for social movements. Twitter has emerged as a popular tool used by feminist activists for spreading awareness and organizing. Research examining feminist movements on social media have highlighted the role of Twitter in emphasizing issues related to gender-based violence (GBV) victimization including the MeToo movement, as well as calling out male privilege and regressive gender norms.

Scholars have examined the high levels of engagement in Twitter discussions and debates by grassroots feminists, as well as the effect of this activity on advancing the feminist agenda in the digital space and amplifying minority voices. Studying Twitter conversations of feminist activists can help identify gender issues that need attention but are underprioritized politically. This brief presents findings from
our analysis of a corpus of tweets by 59 Indian feminist activists, tweeted between March and August 2020. The analysis examines how the feminist community in India has used Twitter as a tool for activism during the COVID-19 pandemic. In addition to providing insights related to mainstream gender issues in India, this analysis hopes to contribute to methodological advancement in gender research….(More)”.