How to hijack a discourse? Reflections on the concepts of post-truth and fake news (2020) Humanities and Social Sciences Communications, 7 (1), art. no. 32.
The aim of this paper is threefold: to perform a (meta)discursive archaeology of the concepts post-truth and fake news, to critically reflect on the change in the application of these concepts between the various domains of discourse such as public intellectual field or academic research and mainstream media, and finally to show how the concept of post-truth is now used against the very intellectual milieu it originates from. Whereas the first objective deals with the historical reconceptualization process, the second shows—drawing on the case of social networks—how the concept of fake news infects topics of public relevance, while the third demonstrates how ubiquitous the critique of the left and postmodern intellectual tradition is. This paper combines Foucault’s and Agamben’s approaches to reconstruct the changes and evolution of the concept and the knowledge that defines it. It considers various sources in which this discourse exists regardless of their ideological background—from intellectual discussions on its formation and critiques of the phenomenon it stands for, to journalistic materials which constitute the body of post-truth and fake news discourse today.