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Exploring discourse and ideology through corpora


Edited By Miguel Fuster Márquez, José Santaemilia, Carmen Gregori-Signes and Paula Rodríguez-Abruñeiras

This book explores discourse mainly through corpus linguistics methods. Indeed, Corpus-Assisted Discourse Studies has become a widely used approach for the critical (or non-critical) analysis of discourses in recent times. The book focuses on the analysis of different kinds of discourse, but most particularly on those which attempt to unveil social attitudes and values. Although a corpus methodology is deemed crucial in all research found here, it should not be inferred that a single, uniform technique is applied, but a wide variety of them, often shaped by the software which has been used. Also, more than one (qualitative or quantitative) methodology or drawing from various relevant sources is often called for in the critical analysis of discourses.

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Post-history, post-democracy, post-truth, post-Trump? Really? A corpus-assisted study of delegitimisation via argument strategies: ‘dirty tricks’, evaluation and hyperbole in modern political discourses: Alan Partington

Alan Partington


This chapter will cover a wide range of history, of themes and of linguistic approaches and notions. As the title implies, we intend to examine how delegitimisation of opposing speakers/authors and their stances is attempted, incorporating the use of techniques from the burgeoning area of Corpus-assisted Discourse Studies (CaDS; Partington et al 2013). We will draw on notions of persuasion first systematised by Aristotle, and also more recent theories which have largely arisen from the area of corpus-assisted linguistics, namely text organisation/structures (Hoey 1983, 1991; Partington/Taylor 2018), evaluation analysis (Hunston/Thompson 2000), lexical priming (Hoey 2005) and its subcategory, highly relevant to political discourse, of deliberately forced lexical priming (Duguid 2009a). Attempts to use corpus techniques to investigate argument structures is a much neglected ‘dusty corner’ (Taylor/Marchi 2018) of CaDS, given a historical tendency of corpus linguistics to focus on copious micro- rather than macro-structures and strategies.

Corpus-assisted Discourse Studies (CaDS) can be understood as ‘the set of studies into the form and/or function of language as communicative discourse which incorporate the use of computerised corpora in their analyses’ (Partington et al. 2013: 10). The advantages of including corpus linguistics techniques in discourse analysis are several. It provides availability of a wealth of data which enables the analyst, among other things, to perceive an overview of the data under analysis. These software techniques enable the researcher to reorganise the data in hand to analyse it in different ways (see for instance Marchi 2018 on how dividing a dataset in...

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