The author admits that the dominant source consisted

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Unformatted text preview: that 2,672 death certificates have been issued. It is interesting to note that in the reporting of Jan/Feb 2005 tsunami disaster in S-E Asia the numbers were first small and then growing. There seem to be three possible reasons behind this difference: 1. Ease of count in a North as opposed to a South country (see Bell 1991 on the unequal representation of various nations affected by news values, such as proximity, eliteness, meaningfulness). 2. Presence of press agencies and reporters. 3. Maximizing vs. minimising the size of a tragedy. 70 Chapter II As indicated in reference to Aitchison’s study it is frequently the case that the language of the media and the language of politics are intricately intertwined. That is the press, radio and TV often mediate (sic!) between politicians and society by reporting and (mis)quoting their speeches and statements or by conducting interviews. Linguists analysing the language of politics, especially in the past, often use media as a source of text. This was the case with Bralczyk (2001), who analysed the language of the political propaganda of the 1970s in Poland on the basis of three sources: (1) political slogans, (2) editorials and political press commentaries and (3) speeches delivered by Party officials and the plenary session pronouncements of the Central Committee of the Polish United Workers Party. The author admits that the dominant source consisted in texts from Trybuna Ludu, because he believed that this newspaper had the widest range of readers in comparison to other sources. In his study Bralczyk focuses on the pragmatic functions of political propaganda, i.e. the informative, ritualistic and persuasive functions. Significantly, in discussing the linguistic means applied to achieve the latter function, Bralczyk (2001: 98, 100) mentions two related issues, a predicativity of the copula-less constructions of the type: Program Partii programem narodu ‘Party Program [is] the nation’s programme’ and the use of metaphors, e.g. Huta Katowice stalowym filarem Polski Ludowej ‘Katowice Steelworks [is] the steel pillar of the People’s Poland’, which due to their form cannot be negated either. These are just two out of seven semantico-syntactic tools used in the introduction of propaganda values in discourse. Bralczyk (2001: 209) in the English summary to his book outlines this process in the following words: The sender of political propaganda texts formulates a certain system of values. He introduces, most often not overtly, certain properties accorded to the world presented by propaganda, always tendentiously, up to the point of fictitiousness. Thus, the world is accorded the same properties twice: once – as elements constituting it, and then – as elements facilitating its positive evaluation. He further elaborates the idea of the represented world on (Bralczyk 2001: 212): …the world presented by PTs [= propaganda texts] is not after all a direct reflection of the real world. It is a world not altoge...
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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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