Akten des 44. Linguistischen Kolloquiums 2009 in Sofia
Edited By Maria Grozeva-Minkova and Boris Naimushin
Dissecting Current Language Use: Contesting Ideologies
← 148 | 149 → Karin Ebeling (Magdeburg)
In 2008, presidential elections took place in the United States of America. Together with my students I studied the rhetoric of the candidates running for the presidency and the way the media represented the candidates and their campaigning. My students were especially interested in the language used by Barack Obama, because for the first time in the history of the USA a man with African-American roots wanted to become President and thus the most powerful and influential politician of the world.
On 20th January 2009, Barack Obama was inaugurated as the 44th President of the United States of America. He became the head of the State and chief executive, free in his decisions and without any need to subordinate himself to the wishes of his party and arguments in Congress (cf. Goetsch (1994: 7). As all previous Presidents, Barack Obama has to represent the national interests of the United States of America. The President’s ability to communicate ideas and to convince the masses of his political arguments is of great importance. Speeches of American presidents have become media events globally accessible. This allows the President to interact with very different people in one communicative event.
The aim of this paper is to dissect the language used by Barack Obama in his presidential communication concerning the withdrawal of the American Military in Iraq during his first months in office, thereby contesting ideologies in and behind the language. Special emphasis will...
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