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Critical discourse analysis ppt agnese bellina

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Critical discourse analysis ppt agnese bellina

  1. 1. Critical Discourse Analysis Secretary of State Hilary Clintonremarks on LGBT rights in recognition of International Human Rights Day
  2. 2. Context• Who: the American Secretary of State Hilary Rodham Clinton• Where: at the United Nations Human Rights Council, Palais des Nations Geneva, Switzerland• When: on December 6, 2011, in recognition of International Human Rights Day: This weekend, we will celebrate Human Rights Day, the anniversary of one of the great accomplishments of the last century (paragraph 1)
  3. 3. Aims• To live up to the idea that all people are entitled to basic human rights: All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights… Because we are human, we therefore have rights. And because we have rights, governments are bound to protect them (par.3)• To affirm that gay rights are human rights: Some have suggested that gay rights and human rights are separate and distinct; but, in fact, they are one and the same (par.9)• To criticize nations that criminalize homosexuality or tolerate the abuse of LGBT people: Today, I want to talk about the work we have left to do to protect one group of people whose human rights are still denied in too many parts of the world today (par.6)• To underline the importance of continuing fighting against international abuses of LGBT people: A fifth and final question is how we do our part to bring the world to embrace human rights for all people including LGBT people (par.24)
  4. 4. Feed-back• Clinton’s remarks were hailed by the international LGBT community as a historic speech• The Human Rights Campaign (the American largest civil rights organization working to achieve lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender equality) acclaimed Clinton’s speech as a fundamental part of the first-ever American government strategy addressing international LGBT human rights abuses
  5. 5. Lexical choice• In the previous slide the size of the words shows us their frequency (the biggest ones are the most used)• There are five main words that the speaker uses the most. These are strictly linked to the topic of the speech: • Rights • People • Human • LGBT • Gay• As we can see, the most used words are adjectives and nouns characterized by a positive meaning• Verbs as work, protect, support, know… are very frequent and they underline an active dimension
  6. 6. Linguistic Inquiry and Word CountI applied the LIWC to Clinton’s speech and these are the results:LIWC Dimensions Your Data Personal Texts Formal TextsSelf-references (I, 3.27 11.4 4.2me, my)Social words 11.96 9.5 8.0Positive emotions 3.00 2.7 2.6Negative emotions 1.20 2.6 1.6Overall cognitive 5.10 7.8 5.4wordsArticles (a, an, the) 6.22 5.0 7.2Big words (>6 21.92 13.1 19.6letters)
  7. 7. Linguistic Inquiry and Word CountOn the basis that Clinton’s speech is a formal text, if we look at the previous chart we can say that: • Positive emotions and use of social words data are considerably higher than the maximum level indicated for formal texts • Negative emotions and self-references are slightly lower compared to the maximum level indicated for formal texts • There are high rates of positive and negative emotions, thus the speech has a great social emotional style • There is a significant use of self-references. Far from giving herself too self-importance, Clinton uses self- references in order to show a high sense of personal involvement in LGBT cause
  8. 8. Organization of speechI divided the speech into 37 paragraphs that are organized as follows: • 1: thanks and introduction to the general topic • 2-3: reference to the past, particularly to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights drafting and to its main content • 4-5: progresses achieved and fights for rights since the Declaration was adopted • 6-7: introduction to the specific topic of LGBT rights referring to the current state of affairs • 8: captatio benevolentiae towards the whole audience and introduction to main issues • 9-11: first issue. Equivalence between gay rights and human rights and references to the main violations of gay rights • 12-14: second issue. Confutation of common beliefs that homosexuality is a western phenomenon. Examples of worldwide constitutions that protect gay rights. • 15-17: third issue. Confutation of those who cite religious or cultural traditions as excuses for discriminating against or abusing those who are LGBT • 18-23: fourth issue. Historical progress, challenges and changes in providing rights for all • 24-27: fifth issue. Perspectives of action including everyone • 28-30: addresses to the audience, to people of all nations and to LGBT men and women in the perspective of a collective action in the realm of gay rights • 31-33: reference to the activity of the Obama Administration in tackling international abuses of LGBT people • 34-35: past and future evolution and transformations • 36-37: hopeful conclusion
  9. 9. Figures of speechAs we are facing with a political speech, we can recognize several rhetorical strategies. Examples include: • Synonymia: They discussed, they wrote, they revisited, revised, rewrote (par. 2) • Antithesis: Some have suggested that gay rights and human rights are separate and distinct but, in fact, they are one and the same (par. 9); Being gay is not a Western invention, it is a human reality (par. 13); violence toward women isnt cultural, its criminal (par. 15); Reaching understanding of these issues takes more than speech. It does take a conversation (par.20) • Captatio benevolentiae: So I come here before you with respect, understanding, and humility (par. 8); The women and men who advocate for human rights for the LGBT community in hostile places, some of whom are here today with us, are brave and dedicated, and deserve all the help we can give them (par.34); I come before you with great hope and confidence that no matter how long the road ahead, we will travel it successfully together (par.37)
  10. 10. Figures of speech• List of three: country we live in, who our leaders are, or even who we are (par.3); the full measure of liberty, the full experience of dignity, and the full benefits of humanity (par.4); People fought and organized and campaigned (par.5); to secure that commitment, that reality, and progress (par.6); No matter what we look like, where we come from, or who we are (par. 11); progress starts, progress comes from, progress comes from (parr. 18-23); people are jailed, beaten, or executed (par.28); this means, it means, it means (par. 28); we have devoted…, engaged…, and established (par. 34)• Repetition of some structures: some have suggested/ seem to believe/ still defend/say and believe…but they are one/ in reality they are born/ but violence isn’t/well, these notions…; repetition of verbs like take, let me say; it means• Metaphor: We know the road ahead will not be easy (par. 34); no matter how long the road ahead, we will travel it successfully together (par. 37)
  11. 11. Participants and processesParticipants ProcessesAll human beings Are born (free and equal)Governments Are bound to protect themBarriers Have fallen away/ preventedPeople Fought/ organizedHuman rights Are still deniedLGBT people Are/ love/ are arrested/ are beaten/ are terrorized/ are executed/ are treated/ are jailed/ are forced/ are denied/ happen to be/ can be cured/ fought/ dedicated/We Understood/ came to learn/ protect/ support/ worry/ work for/ work to/ act/ will travel/ fought/ are launching/ promote/ announce/ have committed/ have devoted/ have engaged/ have establishedI Come/ ask/ mean/ share/ know/
  12. 12. Participants and processes• We can recognize two main categories of participants: LGBT people and we (intended as audience + American people+ people all around the world)• The former ones are linked to passive verbs (they are the victims of the processes) while the latter ones bring together active forms of verbs (they are the agents)
  13. 13. Verbal and nonverbal communication• Firm and sure voice• Short sentences expressed with great clarity• Deep self-confidence (she does not read anything, she speaks plainly and seems to be speaking off the cuff- but obviously she is not)• Self-confident posture• Lack of embarrassment

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