Anger in Academic Twitter: Sharing, Caring, and Getting Mad Online

  • Karen Gregory University of Edinburgh
  • sava saheli singh New York University
Keywords: Academic Labor, Twitter, Emotion, Emotional Labor, Affective Labor, Academic Freedom, Adjunct Labor, Anger


This article examines two different cases or “events” in Twitter to understand the role that negative emotions play in online discussions of academic labor. As academic labor conditions deteriorate and academics take to online spaces, they do so to critique, connect, and organize. We suggest that negative emotions may play a productive role in raising awareness of labor issues, as well as serving as a site for organizing across academic hierarchies and beyond the university. Additionally, negative emotions may fuel the production of new networks, personal, and professional connections. However, as we show, anger online can also provoke substantive repercussions, both personally and institutionally. We suggest that paying attention to the role that negative emotions play on Twitter can help academics gain a better sense of how to use their digital labor for collective action.
Academic Labour, Digital Media and Capitalism