Alterity in the representation of immigrants in the presidential speeches of George W. Bush (2001-2009): a critical discourse study
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Universidad de Granada
DepartamentoUniversidad de Granada. Departamento de Filologías Inglesa y Alemana
Lengua inglesaDiscursosEmigración e inmigraciónEstudio y enseñanza
Catrinescu, E. Alterity in the representation of immigrants in the presidential speeches of George W. Bush (2001-2009): a critical discourse study. Granada: Universidad de Granada, 2013. 325 p. [http://hdl.handle.net/10481/24021]
SponsorshipTesis Univ. Granada. Departamento de Filologías Inglesa y Alemana
The dissertation undertakes a critical discourse analysis on the presidential speeches of GW Bush in search for patterns of alterity in the representation of immigrants. It provides a complex background for the analysis of the role played by immigration in North American society, politics and public debate, at the light of which linguistic expressions encountered to refer to immigrants are interpreted. The methodological frame used for the corpus-driven linguistic analysis of the almost 3,7million words is Critical Discourse Study, especially endebted to Ruth Wodak's Discourse-Historical Approach, while theoretically we draw on the contributions of Norman Fairclough, Teun van Dijk and M.A.K. Halliday. Wordsmith linguistic analysis tool made possible the processing of the huge quantity of untagged data. It was found that GW Bush does make use of altering devices with regard to immigrants, starting from the level of lexicalisation and ending with argumentation schemes. More particularly, the former US President uses dehumanising descriptions, portrays immigrants as second-class memners of the community they live in, criminalises, directly and indirectly, people of Latino background and establishes a common denotative ground for immigrants abd terrorists. By shifting conceptual and time frames, Bush contributes to a fossilisation of the self-other discourse patterns, whereby van Dijk's ideological frame boosts the strategic moves regarding the 'self' in the direction intended, leaving the representation of the 'other' at the chances of the intention communicated. At a more prectical level, it was concluded that the political interest of Bush in the migration is understated in his political speeches, that besides scarce discoursive attention paid to the issue, he ventured unprecedented governmental spending in border militarisation and institutional rearrangement to carry on enforcement measures such as apprehension, detention and deportation and that there is little hope for foreseeable change in the treatment towards immigrants in the near future in the United States.