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Title: Discourse and themesong rhetoric : reproduction and transformation of the discourse of Thatcherism across socio-political domains.
Author: Phillips, Louise Jane.
ISNI:       0000 0001 3488 8894
Awarding Body: London School of Economics and Political Science (University of London)
Current Institution: London School of Economics and Political Science (University of London)
Date of Award: 1993
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Abstract:
The focus of the thesis is the operation of the discourse of Thatcherism across different sociopolitical domains: official Conservative Party texts and official Labour Party texts (speeches by Cabinet and Shadow Cabinet members to the Annual Party Conferences in 1990 and 1991), news media (coverage of the 1990 and 1991 Party Conferences), the arguments of members of the public (1990) and of grassroots Labour Party members (1991) and grassroots Conservative Party members (1991 and 1992). A theoretical model of discourse and rhetoric was constructed, drawing principally on different theories of discourse, on research on rhetoric, and on the social constructionist perspective in social psychology. The research aimed to draw a link between macro processes of social and cultural change and micro processes of everyday language use. An attempt was made to explore processes, involving the use of a particular type of rhetoric (labelled the themesong), by which discourses are produced and transformed, and corresponding meanings are negotiated. The roots of themesong rhetoric in the genre of the everyday world facilitate take-up by the mass media and the public, and thus the penetration of the discourse of Thatcherism into the language of individual language users. In order to identify the extent to which elements of the discourse of Thatchensm and the Welfare discourse were used in texts as source discourses, and the ways in which they were transformed to produce new discourses, the following research was conducted: discourse analysis of the speeches of Cabinet and Shadow Cabinet members at the Annual Labour and Conservative Party Conferences (1990 and 1991); discourse analysis of print and broadcast media coverage of the Conferences (1990 and 1991); discourse analysis of 22 interviews with members of the public before and after the Conferences (1990); discourse analysis of twelve depth interviews with grassroots members of the Conservative and Labour parties at the Conferences (1991), and six depth interviews with grassroots members of the Conservative Party (February 1992). It was found that in all of the domains studied, the discourse of Thatcherism was reproduced and transformed through the selective use of themesong rhetoric.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID: uk.bl.ethos.262572  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Language Literature Mass media Performing arts Political science Public administration Sociology Human services
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