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Discourse Studies – Ways and Crossroads

Insights into Cultural, Diachronic and Genre Issues in the Discipline


Edited By Karolina Bros and Grzegorz Kowalski

The volume brings together papers emerging from the GlobE conference (University of Warsaw). The authors explore major topics in Discourse Studies, offering insights into the field’s theoretical foundations and discussing the results of its empirical applications. The book integrates different lines of research in Discourse Studies as undertaken at academic centres Europe-wide and beyond. In this diversity, the editors identify certain dominant lines of study, including (new) media discourse, political discourse in the age of social/digital media, or professional discourse in globalized workplace contexts. At the same time, the volume shows that Discourse Studies not only investigate emerging language phenomena, but also critically reassess research issues formerly addressed.

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Shockvertising, scandalization and viral communication in discursive struggle: Nergal in The Voice of Poland (Adam Warzecha)


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Adam Warzecha

University of Silesia, Katowice, Poland

Shockvertising, scandalization and viral communication in discursive struggle: Nergal in The Voice of Poland

Abstract: Participation of Adam “Nergal” Darski, the leader of the death metal band Behemoth, in the television talent–show The Voice of Poland in autumn 2011 caused a media storm and fierce public debate in Poland.1 This story has focused as in a lens Polish social, political and religious life. Here heavy metal intersects with the popular media and culture, controversial stage image with court trials, Nergal’s fight against leukemia with advertising, Satanism and its symbols with Christianity, political struggle during the parliamentary election campaign with religious life, freedom of speech and artistic expression with religious freedom.

This paper aims to answer two fundamental questions about those events: (1) How various discourses involved influenced each other?; (2) Which communication mechanisms have been used? Methodologically I use the Critical Discourse Analysis approach of Norman Fairclough (2003, 2005) and the case study method (Gerring, 2007; also Stacks, 2005, 2011) to identify three intertwining and interacting processes of communication: (1) Nergal’s shockvertising/publicity in the death metal niche; (2) Nergal’s shockvertising/publicity in TVP when promoting The Voice of Poland to mass audience; (3) political and religious scandalization performed by specific activists (various political, church and religious organizations, bishops etc.)

1. Background

Nergal is the stage name of Adam Michał Darski (b. 1977), the leader of the death metal...

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