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Investigating Conflict Discourses in the Periodical Press


Edited By Giuliana Elena Garzone, Mara Logaldo and Francesca Santulli

The contributions collected in this book deal with the representation of conflict in the periodical press, which has often been an arena of adversarial stances, staged and enacted either within the same publication or enlarged to involve various newspapers and magazines in a series of provocations and replies. Underlying all the contributions is the awareness that the periodical press provides an ideal terrain for research on the discursive representation of conflict, having the prerogative to combine insight with a constant updating of the debate. The issue is approached in an interdisciplinary perspective, bringing linguistics and discourse analysis with Periodical Studies, hence highlighting the connection between language and ideology. The focus on lexical choices and rhetorical devices used to tackle current controversial issues such as Brexit, immigration, violence in sports, policies regarding health and food, women’s role and legal matters ultimately transcends national boundaries to become more widely representative of today’s discourses of conflict.

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This book may be considered as a spin-off of the international Conference on ‘Conflict in the Periodical Press’ held at IULM University, Milan, on 28th–30th June 2017. It was the Sixth Annual Conference of the European Society for Periodical Research (ESPRit), an association whose aim is to examine the constitution of a specific periodical field within the wider framework of ideological and cultural fields. In this volume, with a few additions, it is possible to read some of the most notable linguistic contributions presented in Milan.

The linguistic concern was a remarkable presence at the ESPRit Conference, and a sign of the involvement of less-practiced methodological features. As a matter of fact, in the domain of periodical studies research has predominantly been a literary one, and mainly focused on Modernism. The interest towards this period issued from the circumstance that all over Europe the cradle of important modern literary movements was often a journal or a review. This induced scholars to acknowledge that a sort of periodical awareness was born at the end of the 19th century, as part of a ‘system’ of new activities and social behaviors that could support programs and works of Modernism.

Hence the myth of the ‘little review’: young and penniless writers, rejected by the public establishment (and rejecting it from their part), who chose genres and artistic styles far from la langue de la tribu, and were therefore almost compelled to found reviews. Although destitute of economic...

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