Language being one of the most evident and powerful ‘markers’ of cultural identity, discourse and text are sites where cultures are both constructed and displayed and where identities are negotiated. The approaches to the analysis of culture and identity adopted here to account for the multifaceted realisations of cultural identities in the texts and documents taken into consideration span from multimodality, to discourse and genre analysis, to corpus linguistics and text analysis. The volume then offers a varied picture of approaches to the scientific enquiry into the multifaceted manifestations of identity in and across national, professional, and disciplinary cultures.
Political Identity on the Net: David Cameron’s Blog: Maria Cristina Paganoni
MARIA CRISTINA PAGANONI
Political Identity on the Net: David Cameron’s Blog
1. Background and scope of the study
The spread of the Internet has given rise to innovative practices in political communication, marking another turning point in the long-standing relationship between politics and the media. Though its real impact on political participation still needs to be assessed (Polat 2005), a growing body of academic research on online politics from 1997 onwards (Gibson/Ward 2000; Gibson et al. 2003; Delli Carpini et al. 2004; Chadwick 2006) shows that net mediation is vertiginously expanding the reach of political discussion, while simultaneously disconnecting political messages from the monopoly of established sources of information, be they parties, institutions, government bodies, or the mainstream media. No wonder, then, that political players should be keen to take advantage of the features of Web 2.0 (Wellmann 2006) – the new interface of the Internet – and of the potentialities of digital genres, bypassing traditional gatekeepers in order to create a direct channel with prospective voters, especially undecided or disaffected ones (Coleman 2005a, 2005b; Lusoli et al. 2006).
Within the emerging features – linguistic, textual and generic – that connote what by analogy has been defined as “political communication 2.0” (Gibson 2007), this paper has selected those that are most perceivable in the visual design and verbal organisation of political candidates’ websites (Wright 2002). The analysis is based upon two observations which are generally reputed to describe the evolution of political communication in Western democracies...