2002 nerlich 2005 considered the media representations

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Unformatted text preview: ved as the basis of argument through analogy, or as illustrations strengthening the points made. In some cases, the metaphor did not domi- A qualitative analysis of war news 191 nate the entire text, but permeated the discourse, reappearing in a number of texts, but without much influence on the text structure (AFGHANISTAN IS A MAZE WITH A WALLED-IN EXIT in example (86); example (85) is a case of a structural metaphor). Second, conceptual metaphors were used to increase the expressive power of texts. Their aim was to arouse emotions in the readers and through empathy to induce the feeling of unity in the nation. Third, within the vilification of the enemy strategy, the role of the metaphors consisted in evaluation. A reference to a metaphor-based scenario increased the intensity of the evaluation activating all the analogous frames and narratives related to the metaphor (e.g. AMERICAN AIR RAIDS ON LIBYA ARE NAZI AIR RAIDS ON POLAND). Finally, the metaphors performed an ornamental function, especially when used by the speakers who wanted to stress their own eloquence (the gunning down of the Shops Bill). The same functions have also been performed by other devices, for example, the emotional appeal of the text could be increased by saturating it with emotionally loaded, but non-metaphorical vocabulary, such as terms of emotion (concern, solemnity, hysterically), verbs of negative valuation (accuse, condemn) or value-laden propaganda key words (jingoism, progressive, colonial, junta, liberty, etc.). The aesthetic function could also be expressed through intertextuality (e.g. the quotation from Macbeth by a Moscow diplomat). The unexpectedly high emotionality of the texts analysed lends further support to Silberstein’s (2002) claim that the mass media do not so much report the facts as construe emotions, which apparently sell better than facts in the mass media market. The last two issues I would like to emphasize here are what I call self-conscious journalism and slips of the pen. The Trybuna Ludu and Rzeczpospolita journalists of the 1980s showed minimal if any awareness of the mass media as the fourth estate. Probably after years of totalitarian censorship, which controlled not only what should not be, but also what had to be published, they viewed the media as a mere channel for the official propaganda. Quite to the contrary, the British journalists appeared highly self-conscious.43 In some articles they discussed the role of war reporters and the question of journalists’ impartiality, in others they talked about the public mission of the media in educating society and explaining 43 On the sense of public mission in the British media as opposed to the sense of commercial entrepreneurism in the US see Gripsrud (1998: 24–26). 192 Chapter IV the motifs behind the government’s policy. Finally, they touched upon the ethical dilemma that reporters of human suffering and death must face, i.e. whether they should limit themselves to professional coverage o...
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This essay was uploaded on 02/24/2014 for the course LING 1100 taught by Professor Friedman during the Fall '09 term at Cornell University (Engineering School).

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