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Credible Threat – Attacks Against Women Online and the Future of Democracy - Oxford Scholarship Online
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Credible Threat: Attacks Against Women Online and the Future of Democracy

Sarah Sobieraj


This book argues that the rampant hate-filled attacks against women online are best understood as patterned resistance to women’s political voice and visibility. This abuse and harassment coalesces into an often-unrecognized form of gender inequality that constrains women’s use of digital public spaces, much as the pervasive threat of sexual intimidation and violence constrain women’s freedom and comfort in physical public spaces. What’s more, the abuse exacerbates inequality among women, those from racial, ethnic, religious, and/or other minority groups, are disproportionately targeted. Drawi ... More

Keywords: digital hate, online abuse, misogyny, social media, political discourse, digital democracy, gender inequality, free speech, political culture, digital publics

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2020 Print ISBN-13: 9780190089283
Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2020 DOI:10.1093/oso/9780190089283.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Sarah Sobieraj, author
Professor of Sociology, Tufts University