Download Talking with the President: The Pragmatics of Presidential by John Wilson PDF

By John Wilson

This publication offers a realistic research of presidential language. Pragmatics is worried with "meaning in context," or the connection among what we are saying and what we suggest. John Wilson explores a number of the ways that U.S. Presidents have used language inside particular social contexts to accomplish particular ambitions. This contains obfuscation, misdirection, using metaphor or ambiguity, or on occasion easily mendacity. He specializes in six presidents: John F. Kennedy, Richard M. Nixon, Ronald W. Reagan, William F. Clinton, George W. Bush, and Barack H. Obama. those presidents disguise many of the final 1/2 the 20th century, and the 1st decade of the 21st century, and every has been linked to a particular linguistic caliber. John F. Kennedy was once famed for his caliber of oratory, Nixon for his manipulative use of language, Reagan for his present of telling tales, Clinton for his skill to have interaction the general public and to linguistically flip arguments and outlines particularly instructions. Bush, nevertheless, used to be famed for his lack of ability to take advantage of language accurately, and Obama returns us to the rhetorical thrives of early Kennedy. when it comes to each one president, quite a number particular examples are explored that allows you to spotlight the ways that a practical research may supply an perception into presidential language. in lots of circumstances, what the president says isn't inevitably what the president skill.

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By John Wilson

This publication offers a realistic research of presidential language. Pragmatics is worried with "meaning in context," or the connection among what we are saying and what we suggest. John Wilson explores a number of the ways that U.S. Presidents have used language inside particular social contexts to accomplish particular ambitions. This contains obfuscation, misdirection, using metaphor or ambiguity, or on occasion easily mendacity. He specializes in six presidents: John F. Kennedy, Richard M. Nixon, Ronald W. Reagan, William F. Clinton, George W. Bush, and Barack H. Obama. those presidents disguise many of the final 1/2 the 20th century, and the 1st decade of the 21st century, and every has been linked to a particular linguistic caliber. John F. Kennedy was once famed for his caliber of oratory, Nixon for his manipulative use of language, Reagan for his present of telling tales, Clinton for his skill to have interaction the general public and to linguistically flip arguments and outlines particularly instructions. Bush, nevertheless, used to be famed for his lack of ability to take advantage of language accurately, and Obama returns us to the rhetorical thrives of early Kennedy. when it comes to each one president, quite a number particular examples are explored that allows you to spotlight the ways that a practical research may supply an perception into presidential language. in lots of circumstances, what the president says isn't inevitably what the president skill.

Show description

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Extra resources for Talking with the President: The Pragmatics of Presidential Language

Sample text

The combination of sets of words at various points throughout the speech reflects the combinatorial force of vocabulary in conveying both general points of change, and core ideological points regarding capitalism and democracy. On a specific point internal to the politics of the United States the pattern emerges again: . . we must hope to give them a sense of what it means to be a loyal friend; a loving parent; a citizen who leaves his home, his neighborhood, his town, better than he found it.

That would take us too far afield into such areas as social psychology, sociolinguistics. Cultural anthropology, and rhetoric, I will restrict the discussion to those aspects of use that are directly related to acts of communication. . Alternatively, other definitions of pragmatics (Leech, 1983; Thomas 1995, Verschueren et al, 1995; Huang; 2007) place much more emphasis on the speaker and the speech situation. Thomas (1995: 22) argues that meaning is an interactional outcome of a “dynamic process” involving both speaker and hearer and the “physical, social and linguistic” aspects of the context of utterance.

The general approach continues when we look at the following words, also used in this speech: new/reborn/future/tomorrow/era/times/moment/passing breeze/leaves/ground(broken)/renew Here there is a sense of changing time, both explicitly in the use of forms from a semantic field of time, that is, tomorrow, future, moment, and also through the invocation of nature. This is made clear in the indirect marking of the seasons, in particular the coming of spring after the old (dead) leaves have been blown away and the “broken ground” of winter has prepared for a new birth (reborn/new).

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