Food, class and ideological political affiliation: Indexical fields in the #secondcivilwarletters tweets

Andrew S. Ross, Gwynne Mapes

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)


The hashtag #secondcivilwarletters emerged after conservative media personality Alex Jones tweeted that Democratic Party supporters were planning a Second Civil War. The resultant tweets mimicked the style of American Civil War soldiers’ letters home, delivering often scathing commentary and critique of contemporary U.S politics, in particular in opposition to President Trump. While this was often accomplished through direct reference to socio-political events, the tweets also utilised food references as a means of indexing particular social identities and ideological positions and related political alignment. The emergent indexicalities demonstrate four key food-related indexical fields: Nutrition, Hipster, Basic, and MAGA. The analysis shows how these indexicalities demonstrate aspects of contemporary classism in the US alongside the partisanship underpinning the #secondcivilwarletters community.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)103-112
Number of pages10
JournalLanguage and Communication
Publication statusPublished - Sept 2020
Externally publishedYes


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