Covid-19 stigma and charismatic social relationship: A legitimization narrative of president trump’s status as a charismatic leader following a sars-cov-2 infection reported by the portuguese media

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Abstract

This concept paper aimed to understand how stigma, a concept usually associated with negative social relationships, in the context of a pandemic threat such as COVID-19 can, in some situations, structure a charismatic social relationship in a perceived positive association between stigma and a specific social characteristic. For this purpose, we used the example of the news selected and highlighted by several Portuguese media about the actions and messages developed by President Trump in the context of his infection with SARS-CoV-2 and the subsequent recovery process. These news reports gave visibility to a narrative that can be considered as reinforcing the legitimization of his condition as a charismatic leader in an electoral context marked by the pandemic threat. In conclusion, stigma associated with a pandemic health threat and generally linked to a negative social status can also reinforce admiration, trust, and belief in the charismatic leader by supporters and followers, as demonstrated with the plight of President Trump. Stigma can be a factor in social uplift in affirming an upward trajectory of social status and symbolic power for actors seen as ill, where stigma-motivated discrimination is experienced positively, unlike in most cases.
Original languageEnglish
Article number130
Pages (from-to)1-13
Number of pages13
JournalSocieties
Volume11
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2021

Keywords

  • Charisma
  • Charismatic domi-nation
  • COVID-19 pandemic
  • Legitimation
  • Media
  • Media narrative
  • President trump
  • SARS-CoV-2
  • Social elevation
  • Stigma
  • Stigmatization

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