Critical discourse analysis and education

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Using Critical Discourse Analysis to Address the Gaps, Exclusions and Oversights in Active Citizenship Education

Using Critical Discourse Analysis to Address the Gaps, Exclusions and Oversights in Active Citizenship Education

Active citizenship education is not intended to indoctrinate and subordinate citizens (e.g., or students) but rather, like critical theory, it seeks to analyze “the ways in which linguistic-symbolic meanings are used to encode, produce, and reproduce relations of power and domination, even within institutional spheres of communication and interaction governed by norms that make democratic ideals explicit in normative procedures and constraints” (Bohman, 2012, n.p.). Habermas (1970) refers to materials (e.g., curricula, policy, and press releases) that reproduce relations of subordination and domination as “distorted communication” (p. 205). Critical theory, as does active citizenship education and critical discourse analysis, acknowledges how institutional language shapes and mis-shapes democratic ideals, practices and power distribution. As Foucault (1982) states, “The exercise of power can produce as much acceptance as may be wished for: it can pile up the dead and shelter itself behind whatever threats it can imagine. In itself the exercise of power is not violence; nor is it a consent, which, implicitly, is renewable” (p. 220). In this sense, government is organically changing and a site of power. Citizens should learn how to identify, analyze and respond to social change, political debates and undemocratic abuses of government power. As I seek to explore citizenship education, and what it can/or ought to look like, I need to heed the wisdom of those critical theorists who have been studying the complexities of democracy, citizenship and education for decades.
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Computer based learning and changing legal pedagogic orders of discourse in UK higher education : a comparative critical discourse analysis of the TLTP materials for law

Computer based learning and changing legal pedagogic orders of discourse in UK higher education : a comparative critical discourse analysis of the TLTP materials for law

Computer Based Learning Changing Legal Pedagogic Orders of and Discourse in UK Higher Education: A Comparative Critical Discourse Analysis of the TLTP materials for Law.. Paul David Wick[r]

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Examining Digital Technology for (Higher) Education through Action Research and Critical Discourse Analysis

Examining Digital Technology for (Higher) Education through Action Research and Critical Discourse Analysis

The data compiled was part of two doctoral studies at a historically disadvantaged school in Cape Town. The objective of both research studies was to analyse students’ comments using online asynchronous focus group interviews through two distinct Facebook groups. For the purposes of this article we took two samples of screenshots from the studies. The first research study, conducted in 2013, focused on the democratisation of senior phase school science through the application of digital technology, which used three iterations of AR cycles. Twenty-six students participated in three discussions using Facebook as a sphere to facilitate deliberation. Each discussion focused on the discussion of a contentious topic. The second research study, conducted in 2014, focused on an education for social justice through sustainable development, economic development and equity. The purpose of the second study’s Facebook group was to afford students the opportunity to engage and deliberate with one another on two films viewed in class in relation to issues of social (in)justice in society. The second Facebook group included 25 students. The students in both research studies had access to the Internet at school via the computer laboratory, which was part of a Khanya Project established in 2002 to assist historically disadvantaged schools with well-equipped computers to enhance teaching and learning. In both studies the students therefore were able to establish individual groups with their peers in order to respond to pedagogical questions posed to the Facebook group.
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Marketisation and widening participation in English higher education : a critical discourse analysis of institutional access policy documents

Marketisation and widening participation in English higher education : a critical discourse analysis of institutional access policy documents

Drawing in part on Foucault ’ s notion of the increasing commodification of the social world, Fairclough (1993) analysed the marketisation of the English higher education sector by focusing on the language used in job advertisements and prospectuses of two distinct types of higher education institutions, noting that language, as a social practice interacts with the social context (Fairclough 1993: 134). Such texts – discursive events – are seen as an attempt to create a hegemonic discourse that places an institution within a relational context to other institutions (Fairclough 1993: 136). Discourse is thus used to establish a ‘ type ’ in contradictory relation to an alternative ‘ type ’ of institution between which there can be a dynamic tension that mirrors the external political and economic context (Mulderrig 2012). These typologies can then be encoded in language, in behaviours and practices to create an institutional narrative that bestows a set of values in the sense of prestige (for pre-1992s) or inclusivity (for post-1992s). Some recent researchers in the field (e.g. Bowl and Hughes, 2013; Graham, 2013) recognise that sectoral diversity and institutional differentiation is a key element of marketisation. Thus the basis for institutional discourses and behaviours is set by market positionality (Gibbs and Knapp, 2002; Maringe, 2005; McCaig, 2010).
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Critical Discourse Analysis of the Political Novel, “Unsecured Existence”

Critical Discourse Analysis of the Political Novel, “Unsecured Existence”

oppressed) are placed against one another. At the stage of exploration, it is also shown that how dis- courses affect on reconstruction of those con- structs. The background knowledge is an instru- ment for social prosperity of these effects, meaning that the social constructs shapes the discourses, and discourses preserve the background knowledge or changes it (Fairclough, 2000: 245). One of the most important issues at the level of exploration of this novel is that the writer or the narrator of the text in an interactive discourse with the discourse of the power, refers to the issue of crisis, instabili- ty, bewilderment, arresting, and prison, on one side, and the stability and tranquility which is the necessity for the social life of family institution, education, rights, ethics, religion, and more impor- tantly, the institution of politics, on the other. This means that exploration is observing the discourse as a part of the process of social combat in the do- main of power relations. Considering the story and the questions that are presented at the level of ex- ploration, it should be made clear what type of power relations have been effective in shaping this discourse at different levels of institutional, social, and conditional, at the stage of social conflicts. Which factors of background knowledge, that has been used, are idialogic? Where is the place of this discourse in proportion of the struggles at different institutional and social levels? Are these struggles hidden or evident? Is the dominant discourse at the service of present power relations or for destroying it? To explore these institutional struggles, the cha- racters are chosen from among intellectuals, tech- nocrats, politicians, specialists, and university stu- dents and teachers by profession. Inside the story context, the get-togetherness and conformity of concepts are used. This factor is magnified when surveying the gender of characters (magnifying the role of Keyvan compared with other characters). At this stage, also, the degree of the presence of politics is investigated, and whether the novel deals with the political issues, evidently.
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A Critical Discourse Analysis of Family and Friends Textbooks: Representation of Genderism

A Critical Discourse Analysis of Family and Friends Textbooks: Representation of Genderism

Despite the move towards technology, textbooks still serve as the most common educational tools in classroom content. Textbooks in developing countries, in turn, play their own part in contributing to gender and social class stereotypes. Books are part of an appropriate system of education on which the social, cultural, scientific and mental growth of learners depend (Kemp, 1977). In this regard, Gershuny (1977, p. 150) claims that “textbooks purporting to teach the specifics of academic discipline have concomitantly taught secondary information gender roles and social values”. In this respect, the unconscious effect of textbooks on students especially in early ages lead to an oppressive and gender- biased attitude in students. “Gender-biased language in textbooks can affect students adversely and it creates an oppressive world for them because this gender-biased language most often is unjustified and unfair” (Cameron, 1990, p. 13). Doubtless, students frequently have interaction with textbooks thus a cautious approach is needed for materials and it must avoid any form of discrimination. Accordingly, textbooks are not only a resource for learning but also a factor that influence people in other matters implicitly. The content of the textbooks helps reinforce gender as a social division and perpetuate inequalities between men and women.
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Empowering the powerful: a critical discourse analysis of public discourse on graduate employability

Empowering the powerful: a critical discourse analysis of public discourse on graduate employability

9 Singh et al. (2012), for instance, contend that Malaysian higher education institutions should be proactive in assessing students with different capabilities. In order to enhance graduate employability, they propose an approach focussed on assessment, and also that learning outcomes should widen the usage of the English language. There are also other studies that have advocated for English language as an important part of graduate employability (Nair– Venugopal, 2003; Shakir, 2009; Yusof, 2008; A. Zaharim et al., 2010). These studies also propose that, in order to fulfil employability requirements by industry, students need to be fluent in communication skills, especially in English. Pillai et al. (2012) state that enhancing soft skills through industrial training improves graduate employability, but that there are certain issues that Malaysian universities need to address, such as the possible mismatch between the tasks assigned to trainees and their areas of study, and the need to enhance English language competency and particular soft skills throughout their degree program. There have been many studies aiming to understand and improve graduate employability in Malaysia, as well as various programs planned and executed in the universities and sponsored by the government. For instance, the establishment of a government agency known as the Graduate Career Accelerated Program (GCAP), under the Prime Minister's Department, supports unemployed graduates. Two private-education centres appointed and linked with the government, Scicom Education Group and MyPartners, provides six weeks’ training for unemployed graduates who have scored cumulative grade point averages of between 2.0 and 3.0. Upon completion of the training session, these firms assist graduates to find employment in the service sector, including commercial banks and multinational companies ("Govt training stint to help graduates get jobs," 2012). These examples above show that the issue of graduate employability has not been resolved, and continues to be discussed, especially in the media.
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Gendered discourse: A critical discourse analysis of newspaper headlines in Ghana

Gendered discourse: A critical discourse analysis of newspaper headlines in Ghana

There has been an increasing number of studies on institutional discourse in recent times. A few have focused on the media which is determined for public reading. According to Bloor and Bloor (2007), discourse can be seen along six strata which are discourse one up to six. Discourse one is the highest unit of linguistic distinction like sound (phoneme), morpheme, word, phrase, clause, sentence and the text. Discourse two is a sample of language in use which is generally meant to be spoken. In other words, discourse two is in consonance with Gee’s (1999) conception of discourse as any language-in-use, with the clause as the basic unit of analysis. Discourse three according to Bloor and Bloor (2007), refers to the communication expected in one situation context relative to one field or discipline and register such as the discourse of the media or education. Other discourses posited by Bloor and Bloor include human interaction, both verbal and non-verbal, discourse as spoken in interaction and lastly, discourse as it stands for the whole communicative event.
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CRITICAL DISCOURSE ANALYSIS: THEORY AND METHOD IN SOCIAL AND LITERARY FRAMEWORK

CRITICAL DISCOURSE ANALYSIS: THEORY AND METHOD IN SOCIAL AND LITERARY FRAMEWORK

the social order of education in a particular society at a particular time. The research further states that the discourse/ semiotic aspect of social order is what we can call an order of discourse. The author further argues that it is the way in which diverse genres and, discourses and styles are networked together. An order of discourse, as Fairclough believed, is a social structuring of semiotic differences. Fairclough also argued that one aspect of this ordering is dominance: some ways of making meaning are dominant or mainstream in a particular order of discourse, while others are marginal, oppositional or alternative. For instance, as Fairclough maintained, there may be a dominant way to conduct a doctor-patient consultation in Britain, but there are also various other ways, which may be adopted or developed to a greater or lesser extent in opposition to the dominant ways. According to Fairclough (2002), an order of discourse is not a closed or rigid system, but rather an open system, which emphasized on what happens in the actual interactions. Concerning the open flexibility of CDA, Cross (2010) quoted Fairclough, in that CDA should open its analysis to different theoretical discourses which construct the problem in focus in different ways. Cross went on to say the items are as follows: colonization/ appropriation; globalization/localization; reflexivity/ ideology; identity/difference. According to Cross, there are two pervasive concerns within this agenda, which cut across items and are, therefore, best not included as items: power and hybridity. Cross concluded that given the orientation to problems, power and struggle over power are constant concerns for CDA.
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Canada's Bilingual Dilemma: A Critical Discourse Analysis

Canada's Bilingual Dilemma: A Critical Discourse Analysis

The origins of French for the Future date back to the 1995 referendum in Québec. It was during this time that the founders of the organization, Lisa Balfour Bowen and John Ralston Saul, became advocates for FSL education despite the fact that Québec was increasingly developing support for independence. At the time, the founders believed that despite the mounting tensions between Québec and Canada surrounding the issue of Québec sovereignty, it was still necessary to continue to demonstrate the benefits of official bilingualism to students in the rest of Canada in order show them that there was a bright future for their bilingual skills. In order to promote this message on both a national and local level, in 1997, French for the Future decided to hold a two day conference in Toronto, Ontario. This event was such a success, that it was subsequently held annually in Toronto with similar events held in other Canadian cities. This conference eventually transformed itself into French for the Future‟s local forums which are, to this day, held annually in local communities across the nation. Today, French for the Future organizes several events and activities including: local forums, the National Ambassador Youth Forum, a national essay contest, and several Francoconnexion sessions. Overall, the organization provides essential supports and programming to both FSL teachers and students that aid in promoting the numerous benefits of official bilingualism and FSL education for Canada‟s youth (French for the Future, 2015).
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Obstetric fistula policy in Nigeria: a critical discourse analysis

Obstetric fistula policy in Nigeria: a critical discourse analysis

understand the causes and impact of obstetric fistula, country capacity to manage obstetric fistula and to identify clinical and programmatic gaps [1, 14]. The assessment demonstrated that although fistula prevalence can be re- duced through surgical management, there are other com- plex determinants in the setting where women live such as poor referral and transportation system and poor access to perinatal support services that influence prevalence rates of obstetric fistula and preclude uptake of fistula treatment [14]. United Nations agencies and partners then encouraged each country to take ownership of their re- spective policy agenda for the eradication of obstetric fis- tula [15]. This meant integrating the policy on obstetric fistula within broader national development plans and poverty-reduction strategies of African nations. The ultim- ate goal of this agenda was to establish a country-specific “levels of care” model, where prevention is factored into all levels of the health system in each country [15, 16]. Nigeria was one of the first countries to implement such a model. Although policy was developed to elim- inate obstetric fistula in Nigeria, obstetric fistula con- tinued to be prevalent as of 2015 [5, 8]. Moreover, there was no comprehensive strategy to estimate progress made or to evaluate community ownership of the interven- tions within the sociopolitical context in Nigeria [14]. Like- wise, country-specific obstetric fistula initiatives were modelled on the earlier Safe Motherhood Initiative and MDG-5 principles, which basically focus on technical im- provement in biomedical maternal and obstetric care ser- vices and on awareness and education about reproductive health services [12].These initiatives were vertical, running parallel to local political and leadership structures within the countries; hence, there was no true ownership of the initiatives, and capacity building for sustainability was not achieved [12, 14].
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Matters of Care in Alberta’s “Inspiring Education” Policy: A Critical Feminist Discourse Analysis

Matters of Care in Alberta’s “Inspiring Education” Policy: A Critical Feminist Discourse Analysis

Critical Discourse Analysis (CDA), “a form of critical social science, which is envisaged as social science geared to illuminating the problems which people are confronted with by particular forms of social life” (Fairclough, 2001, p. 125), is not a method unto itself. Fairclough’s style of CDA draws from many scholars before him, notably the work of Michel Foucault. While I have not directly read Foucault, I acknowledge that the kind of analysis I am doing owes much to his work. What distinguishes Foucauldian analysis from CDA is “attention to concrete textual features ... according to Fairclough (1992a)” (Blommaert & Bulcaen, 2000, p. 448). Blommaert and Bulcaen (2000) see CDA as an attitude: “the critical turn in studies of language is by no means restricted to any single approach but represents a more general process of (partial) convergence in theories and practices of research on language” (p. 447). I situate this project at the intersection of several different traditions of discourse analysis.
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The reproduction of islamophobia in German and Dutch newspaper article discourse : An analysis from a Critical Discourse Analytical Perspective : an analysis from a critical discourse analytical perspective

The reproduction of islamophobia in German and Dutch newspaper article discourse : An analysis from a Critical Discourse Analytical Perspective : an analysis from a critical discourse analytical perspective

Beginning with an article about a talk show to which a woman of Turkish origin was invited, this woman is quoted when defending her parents‟ generations‟ low education (FAZ, 02 September 2010). It is stressed that though nowadays the focus lies on education and integration, this was not expected of the „Gastarbeiter‟ who were supposed to leave again. This is a rarely noted aspect in the discussion of integration of immigrants. Moreover, the article is quite critical of Sarrazin‟s hypotheses and alleges that in the spirit of Islamism Sarrazin wants to see the end of civilization. The use of modality here indicates that the author does not agree with Sarrazin and that he does not foresee the demise of the occident caused by a fundamentalist Islam. All in all, this article is putting concern about Muslims more into perspective. This is done by granting Muslims access to the debate and by referring to a woman of Turkish origin the speech act has a high credibility. Moreover, the use of modality when commenting on Sarrazin‟s hypotheses is used in order to create a social meaning in which Sarrazin is inferior to the woman in the talk show and the reader. The modality can also be interpreted in terms of the argumentative scheme which means that Sarrazin‟s hypotheses are delegitimized. Thus, no concern regarding Muslims and Islam is supported.
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Pipelines, Prostitution and Indigenous Women : A Critical Analysis of Contemporary Discourse

Pipelines, Prostitution and Indigenous Women : A Critical Analysis of Contemporary Discourse

In the case of land, particularly in the north, landscapes are cast as “ac- tive, wild, untamed, and often harsh and even penetrative,” in need of con- quering by male tourists (Pritchard and Morgan 897). More covert examples include public education materials on bear safety or safe fish consumption which largely negate the structural and human-based reasons (e.g. pollution, deforestation, envi- ronmental policies) for the safety risk. While the above connections I have made between prostitution, oil and pipeline development, and domination are not new, they pro- vide a framework for understanding how both prostitution and oil and pipeline development (re)assert do- minion over Indigenous women and land through their dehumanization, objectification, secularization and othering, and thus are acts of violence. Oil and Pipeline Development, Prostitution, Indigenous Women, and Land
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Critical discourse studies

Critical discourse studies

changes within a system that is itself the object of explanatory and normative critique. This may mean that CDS does not extend beyond “help[ing] people to conform with open eyes, to identify their feelings about it, and to recognise the compromises they are making’ (Janks and Ivanič 1992, 318). Mautner (2010, 184, note 15) is more optimistic, however, affirming that “[t]he dilemma can be resolved by opting for a constructively critical approach which … shows … how linguistic resources can be deployed to convey courtesy, empathy and professionalism”. While Mautner here refers to communications training in higher education institutions, the case can also be made for talking to corporate clients: a critical analysis of workplace discourse may not change the socio-economic system in which it is embedded, but it can effect changes in discursive practice to make them less exclusionary and more balanced, and lead to more respect and participation.
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Theorizing Critical Discourse Theory and Analysis for Investigating Mathematics Classrooms

Theorizing Critical Discourse Theory and Analysis for Investigating Mathematics Classrooms

Such forms of discourse can be unifying in that they uphold an “infinite con- tinuity of discourse” (Foucault, 1972: 25) that isolates anything new “against a background of permanence” (Foucault, 1972: 21). Permanence in this sense is propagated and transmitted through individuals, notions and theories. It makes possible their linking to the same “organizing principle, to subject them to the exemplary power of life” (Foucault, 1972: 22). However, Foucault (1972) pro- poses to suspend tradition as an explanation for their apparent durability, ar- guing that “it is too easy to simplify the problem of successive phenomena through the levelling agency of tradition” (Foucault, 1972: 21). The appearance and reappearance of certain forms of knowledge is too persistent to be reduced to tradition (Cousins & Hussain, 1984). Rather, the conditions with which knowledge appears and reappears require reference to specific meaning rather than simply to tradition. Tradition and permanence can be contested as they are seldom complete or total. They may be contested through various forms of chal- lenge and counter challenge (van Dijk, 2001; de Certeau, 1984). This contesta- tion can take the form of an alternative discourse.
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Questioning Muslim Identity: A Critical Analysis of the Discourse on Muslim Integration

Questioning Muslim Identity: A Critical Analysis of the Discourse on Muslim Integration

The very language of Sarkozy’s model of integration is based on normative assumptions regarding the political and cultural nature of French republicanism and secularism. Sarkozy recalls that the most important aspect of French national identity is based on the principle of Laicité, or in his words, “the separation of the spiritual and the secular,” which, according to Republicanism, is the only cultural- behavioural filter against fanaticism [46]. Thus the secular-liberal state, according to Sarkozy, should incorporate religious and cultural characteristics into the very foundation of its social contract; at the same time, Muslims must publicly recognise French identity while the civic contract has to deliberately exclude any other identity that might challenge French values, which are basically “Republican” and “deeply marked by a Christian civilization” [49-50]. Thus, Sarkozy conceptualises republican and Christian religious values as a universal discourse and assumes the homogeneity of these values as a given national characteristic. Is France in fact secular? Sarkozy seems to think that it is only partially so and that the country is instead the product of a compromise between “Christian civilization” and republican political values. The importance of “Christianity” in Sarkozy’s view raises the question whether France is indeed truly secular or what precisely the French term Laïcité implies.
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Representations of middle age in comedy film: a critical discourse analysis

Representations of middle age in comedy film: a critical discourse analysis

Jäger and Maier suggest that Foucault’s approach of bricolage is appropriate for researchers wishing to use dispositive analysis (Jäger & Maier, 2009). Bricolage is defined as a “construction or creation from a diverse range of available things” (Oxford Dictionary, 2013). By using this approach, we were able to “fossick” through a wide range of “things” present in the sample of films to analyse the representation of middle age in comedy films. The process of writing about these observed actions and objects transformed those aspects into text: for example, objects which have become emblematic in the discourse of middle age, such as motorbikes and red sports cars, were changed from being “things” into text and their relationship with the discourse of middle age and mid-life crisis was articulated in language. Figure 1 shows the relationship between discursive practices, non-discursive practices and materialisations in dispositive analysis. The diagram is adapted from Jäger and Maier’s diagram of the dispositive (2009, p. 57).
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Critical analysis of the discourse of competence in professional nursing practice

Critical analysis of the discourse of competence in professional nursing practice

The theory of power relations is a dominant factor to be considered in critically analysing the discourse of competence in professional nursing practice. The requirement to meet the standards set by the NCNZ that relate to clinical competency may be viewed as a message of power by some nurses (Powers, 2001). This message of power may be seen as contributing to the construction of new ways of thinking, commitment, accountability and belief around meeting the required standards set by the NCNZ. The nurse’s thinking becomes constructed in such a way where the nurse begins to see his/herself differently within the role and may see others differently also. Foucault’s (1926-1984) original thinking around ‘the subject’, was influenced by Nietzsche (1844-1900), who believed that people were not free agents who make their own meanings and control their lives; rather they have their lives, thoughts and activities scripted for them by social forces and institution, such as hospitals. However, Foucault’s (1926-1984) later work considered ways in which the ‘subject’ could be active in crafting or negotiating their identity. Foucault believed that the self could be perfected, and that only those who were striving to perfect themselves could have access to rationality and truth. The attempt to ‘perfect the self’, involves the use of various regulatory bodies or ‘technologies of the self’, including the repeated struggle to overcome those things that threaten self-mastery. When I relate this to nursing competence, this notion of Foucault’s suggests that the subject (nurse) does have control over their own subjectivity, and through their own attitude and commitment toward their own professional development the nurse has control over constructing themselves within the discourse.
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Language Power and Ideology in Commercial Discourse: A Prologue to Critical Discourse Analysis for Neophyte Analysts

Language Power and Ideology in Commercial Discourse: A Prologue to Critical Discourse Analysis for Neophyte Analysts

As mentioned earlier, the texture analysis of texts include everything other than language, and in addition to providing insight into what is present in a text, a textural analysis also gives information on the absent elements in the text, equally significant to know the text. Texts in Figure 2 have different textures giving insight into the social and ideological perspectives. The participants in the text 1 are dressed in colours which link them with one another: the father and the mother are dressed in blue shaded dresses whereas the son is dressed in white. The same colour is also present in father’s and mother’s dresses. This unification in colour reinforces the impression of family unity that the drink intended to emphasize. However, unlike the formal dressing of parents, the son’s casual clothes are also indicative of the coming social change in the next generation. The son’s shirt has a red spot similar to the logo of the drink whereas the parents have only held bottles in hands which might be interpreted as the company’s targeted future consumers. Though the father is standing behind but they are standing in a position which gives the impression that the father is protecting his family – again a family oriented message that the company intended to give to their consumers. On the other hand in Text 2, male and female participants are in a playground. Both the participants can be a married couple, just friends or civil partners – conclusion is left to viewers’ discretion to be made in accordance with their own choice. In the perspective of women’s movement for equal rights, the male participant is standing behind the female participant whereas the female participant is sitting in a more relaxed and authoritative posture. The male participant is no more a protector like in Text 1 rather both participants seem to enjoy equal status. The couple is not in four walls but in the open which speaks of emerging liberty and diminishing institution of family and household. The dresses of both participants are more liberal and casual than in the Text 1 denoting the change which was anticipated in the casual dress of the young boy in the text1. Text 3 on the other hand, contains a number of well-groomed female participants dressed in red and standing in a confident posture. The absence of male participants is significant and denotes the social change where women can survive on their own without any support from the male partners. Thus, the texture of the three texts suggests how these texts have been composed in line with the social practices of respective periods in the American society and these texts insinuated certain ideologies in the guise of marketing a drink. Such ideologies cannot be realised unless consumers are aware of how powerful groups in a society use language to manipulate their vested interests.
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