During these times of aggressive words and violent images and behaviors, extreme political speeches are no longer shocking.
The necessity of building walls against the other groups in order to prevent the contact with a different value system, is associated to the urge of keeping “the disgust” far from our -otherwise calm and happy (?)- lives. The Italian Vice-Premier Matteo Salvini is used to define as “disgusting” phenomena like migration, populations as the Africans, institutions like the European Union, etc. He joins this way a main international stream, not merely Italian. Aren’t the Mexican people loathing to Trump? Aren’t the European laws and taxes repulsive to Putin? And still: aren’t the migrant people revulsing to all those (European) Countries who simply refuse to take care of them?
In an interesting book by Antonello Caporale, titled “Il Ministro della Paura” is shown through a cloud map how the semantic field of Salvini discourses is centered on the crucial notion of racism, linked and connected to topics like terrorism, invasion, (ethnic) cleansing to be pursued by the usage of bulldozers. The map is built as a semiotic square mixed to a mapping (see as well the final remarks of Bianca Terracciano), a methodology that we largely use and appreciate because of its great power of explanation and analysis; more than these concepts related to the disgusting, the cloud map also shows the relations of Italian Vice-Premier with other leaders and institutions, in a scheme that sees the extreme Heads of Government as superheroes and the democratic ones like enemies of the Italian population.
Is this the direction we truly want for our society?
Maybe we had better trust, instead than in populist leaders, in the so called “Wisdom of the Crowd” and rely on all those people who are instead looking for something or someone to be finally called delightful. Lovable. Agreeable at least.
Are we ready to stand and resist against this global loop of the Plea of Disgusting?
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