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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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The Representation of National and International Football-Related Conflicts in the British Press: From Hooliganism to Terrorism


1 Aims, corpus and methodology

This chapter aims at analysing how the British press, in particular tabloids, have depicted football-related violence over a period of more than fifty years. Beginning with a description of the way the press portrayed some of the episodes of hooliganism in the twentieth century, the chapter discusses whether the approach of the press to football-related violence in the twenty-first century has actually changed in comparison to the previous one. The goal is to assess whether the changes which have affected the way football is generally portrayed by the media and experienced by the masses (which connect to broader and more profound transformations at global level), are mirrored in the representations conjured up by the British tabloids.

In order to do so, after an initial section which analyses the way the press portrayed phenomena of hooliganism in the twentieth century as guerrilla and war-like situations, the chapter discusses the way the World Cup of 2018 was represented, focusing in particular on the conflicts that threatened the success of the tournament in its initial stages. This event appeared, in fact, particularly interesting, due to the threats made by the Islamic State (IS) to the tournament, which enabled the terroristic menace to find its way into the world of football too. As such, the more ‘domestic violence’ with which the press had to deal during the twentieth century assumes international and more dramatic overtones during the twenty-first. The final goal is thus...

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