Critical Discourse Analysis (CDA)

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1. Introduction Critical discourse analysis (CDA), according to Crystal (2008 p. 123) is “a perspective which studies the relationship between discourse events, and sociopolitical and cultural factors, especially the way discourse is ideologically influenced by and can itself influence power relations in society”. Thus, the primary aim of CDA seems to uncover hidden power relations and ideological processes at work in spoken or written texts. 2. What is CDA? Fairclough (1995, p. 132) has described CDA as aiming to “systematically explore often opaque relationships of causality and determination between (a) discursive practices, events, and texts, and (b) wider social and cultural structures, relations and processes; to investigate how such practices, events and texts arise out of and are ideologically shaped by relations of power and struggles over power.” CDA is now adopted and practiced by a huge posse of applied linguists, sociologists, political scientists, students of the media and cultural studies. 2.1. Principles of CDA Locke (2004) summarizes the key tenets of CDA as: • The existing social order stems in history, and is relative, socially created, and transitive. • The social structure and processes are dependent more on certain aspects of reality dubbed as discourses than on individuals. • Discourse has the potential of creating ideology. • Power in society is exercised by presence of certain discursive configurations which establish the social strata and lends power and status to some over the others. • Human subjectivity is the outcome of partial impact of discourse as well as of the diversity of social roles as seen in the discourse. • Reality is a notion that mediates between textuality and intertextuality ... ... middle of paper ... ..., London: Routledge & Kegan Paul. Kress, G. (1985) Linguistic Processes in Sociocultural Practice, Geelong, Australia: Deakin University Press; 2nd edition 1989, Oxford: Oxford University Press. Locke, T. (2004). Critical Discourse Analysis, London: Continuum. Malmkjaer, K. (ed) (2002). The Linguistics Encyclopedia (2nd ed). New York: Routledge. Threadgold, T. (1986) ‘Semiotics – ideology – language’, in T. Threadgold, E.A. Grosz, G. Kress and M.A.K. Halliday (eds) Semiotics, Ideology, Language (Sydney Studies in Society and Culture, no. 3), Sydney: Sydney Association for Studies in Society and Culture: 15–60. van Dijk, T. (1993) Discourse and Elite Racism, London: Sage. Wodak, R. (1996) Disorders of Discourse, London: Longman. Wodak, R. (1997) ‘Critical discourse analysis’, in T. van Dijk (ed.) Discourse as Social Interaction, London: Sage.

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