This study is the second of two I have done concerning how language is used to persuade others to believe things and to do things. The first, published by Aca demic Press, was The Language of Television Advertising, and was concerned with how advertisers use language in their efforts to sell products and services and how consumers could be expected to understand it. In this study, the focus is on how politicians use language to win elections and get others to accept their policies and programs and on how journalists report the suasive efforts of politicans. I combine an interest in the language of political reporting with an interest in the language of politics for a number of reasons. First, much of the suasive rhetoric of politicians is filtered through the minds of political journalists before it reaches the citizenry, and we can be reasonably sure that this rhetoric does not come out the way it went in. Second, the press plays a significant role in deter mining the nation's political agenda through its choices of what issues will be presented to the public, how these issues will be presented, and which voices will be heard speaking out on these issues. Third, political reporting can be suasive in effect, if not in intent, and it will be useful, I think, to understand how this is so.
1 Introduction.- Language and Politics.- Orwell's Thesis.- A Question of Meaning.- Politics and Political Journalism.- The Role of Journalism in the Political Process.- The Question of Bias.- Conclusion.- 2 Language and Myth in American Politics.- Orwell's Thesis.- Language and Myth.- Myths as Simple Causal Theories.- Myth and Language in American Politics.- Conclusion.- 3 The Language of American Presidents.- President John F. Kennedy.- President Lyndon Baines Johnson.- President Ronald Reagan.- Conclusion.- 4 The Problem of Bias in Political Journalism.- Review of the Recent Literature.- Nonlinguistic Bias.- Linguistic Bias.- Other Asymmetries in Political Journalism.- Charges of Bias in Political Journalism.- Conclusion.- 5 Reporting of Political Speech.- The Ingredients of Reported Speech.- The News Source.- References to News Receivers.- Reports of Null Speech Events.- The Content of Reported Speech.- Verbs.- Tense and Aspect in Reported Speech.- Conclusion.- 6 Identification of Context in News Reporting.- Specification of Context in News Reports.- Identification of Extralinguistic Context.- The Linguistic Context.- Conclusion.- 7 Political Bias in News Magazines.- Previous Studies.- The Present Study.- Results of the Study.- Conclusion.- 8 Linguistic Aspects of Television Journalism.- Introductory Remarks.- Live Broadcasts.- The Immediacy of Television Journalism.- The Structure of Television News Stories.- Types of Television News Stories.- Instant Television News Analysis.- Conclusion.- 9 A Brief Look at Presidential Press Conferences.- Implied Criticism.- The Reagan Replies.- The Great Communicator.- Conclusion.- 10 Conclusion.- References.
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