ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

A+| A| A-

Personalisation of Democratic Politics


It is a simple matter to make connections between establishing a personal hold in the public eye through the circulation of images. This has become easier through the uses of digital technology. Digital circulation of images seems to have both a positive and a negative impact on the political sensibilities of the people. For example, online protests do use images in order to evoke sympathy and concern for justice and human dignity. Protests organised to mobilise people in order to make a common cause with a person who has been the victim of injustice are widespread in India. Some of those who are driven by concerns of identity would argue that digital technology has, indeed, democratised the virtual space where now even ordinary leaders can put up their posters and occupy the public space which was earlier dominated by powerful sociopolitical figures. It is in this sense that images can mobilise people in favour of preserving values such as social justice and human dignity.

Thus, people do access digital images from different and perhaps even from mutually exclusive angles. Images thus evoke different emotions that are directed by the insights that some people have about such images of political personalities that have an overwhelming presence in the public spaces. Digital images that are portrayed, photographed, and displayed on big digital banners play a cognitive function of organising and classifying people’s emotion on different grounds. Thus, repetition of images and messages through political advertisements would satisfy some but annoy many. This is because some of the sensible people would nurture the feeling that images are a part of a pseudo-continuity of the same frozen slogans and empty promises made in the advertisements or through the images in political advertisements, or through the image of some television anchors. The flow of images dissolves into pseudo-continuity because, arguably, they lack legitimacy that one may find in the advertisements given by corporate brands. At least in such advertisements, it is assumed that they yield tangible results inasmuch as they produce consumers. But political advertisements fall short of yielding such a tangible result; they only beget illusion. Of course, the corporate brands outsource their politics by funding the political advertisements of dominant leaders as well.

Dear Reader,

To continue reading, become a subscriber.

Explore our attractive subscription offers.

Click here


To gain instant access to this article (download).

Pay INR 50.00

(Readers in India)

Pay $ 6.00

(Readers outside India)

Updated On : 1st Apr, 2023
Back to Top