After Two Years of the Covid-19 Pandemic in Germany: Communication about Unvaccinated Individuals and Possible Social Consequences

Kerstin Wüstner


In the attempt to mitigate the crises, the German government struggled with the question what to do. Since vaccines had become available for all, the focus turned on the group that had not decided for vaccination. This paper investigates communication about unvaccinated people and possible social consequences. To this purpose, selected statements of politicians and medical/scientific representatives are analysed. Some representatives addressed the responsibility for the ongoing pandemic to unvaccinated people. They were pictured as supporters of conspiracy myths, or as individuals that lack cognitive or social competences. In order to persuade them to achieve vaccination, several measures were suggested. In order to enhance persuasion, political communication sometimes seemed to simplify or even neglect scientific knowledge. Finally, it is critically discussed what it could mean for society and its handling of the crisis if the described social representations of unvaccinated people reflected at least to some extent public understanding.

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ISSN: 2062-087X

DOI: 10.14267/issn.2062-087X