Political ideologies and identity in British newspaper discourse

Hardman, Dean (2008) Political ideologies and identity in British newspaper discourse. PhD thesis, University of Nottingham.



Newspaper editorials have a special role within the pages of the press, as they are openly persuasive and there is less emphasis on objectivity (Lee and Lin, 2006). They represent the participation of the newspaper in public debate (Le, 2003) and are sites where the ideological stances of a newspaper can often be found (Hackett and Zhao, 1994). Editorials frequently focus upon issues surrounding national politics, often discussing political leaders and the decisions taken by leading politicians. This thesis investigates four British newspapers, The Guardian, The Telegraph, the Daily Mail and the Mirror, in order to assess the different ways in which identities have been constructed over the past thirty-five years by the newspapers for the political leaders featured in the editorials. The thesis utilises a novel analytical framework that modifies Critical Discourse Analysis by incorporating theories of performed identities and metaphor with a "Discourse Historical" approach to critical analysis.

The creation of identities, alongside the stance adopted towards individuals and political issues, are found to both help create an ideological identity for the newspaper itself while simultaneously encouraging readers to conceptualise events in such a way that serves the ideology in question. The findings show a series of strategies used by newspapers to evaluate political leaders and their decisions in ways that serve the newspapers' ideologies. Differences in the linguistic strategies used to reflect stance in tabloid newspapers when compared to broadsheet newspapers are also found.

Item Type:Thesis (PhD)
Supervisors:Mullany, L.J.
Uncontrolled Keywords:Discourse Analysis, Critical Discourse Analysis, Media Discourse, Media, Newspapers, Ideology, Identity, Sociolinguistics, Political Discourse, Political Ideology
Faculties/Schools:UK Campuses > Faculty of Arts > School of English Studies
ID Code:601
Deposited By:Dean Hardman
Deposited On:18 Nov 2008
Last Modified:06 Feb 2009 14:44

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