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Language and Power

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About this Course

About the Course

In this course, Professor Christopher Hart (Lancaster University) explores the ways that language can serve to enact power and enable social inequalities and injustices, particularly in relation to social issues such as immigration and political protests. In the first module, we introduce the concept of a text and consider the relationship between language and power in society. In the second module, we begin to explore the models and methods available to critical discourse analysis (CDA) to help deconstruct textual meanings and consider their relations to power and ideology. In the third module, we think about how power and ideology are encoded through some of the grammatical choices a text may present, before turning in the fourth module to consider the impact of a single linguistic feature – metaphor. In the fifth and final module, we think about the construction of power and ideology in other modes of representation, focusing in particular on images.

About the Lecturer

Prof. Christopher Hart is Professor of Linguistics at Lancaster University. His research draws on insights and methods from cognitive science and critical discourse analysis to investigate the links between language, cognition and social/political action. Some of his recent publications include Discourse, Grammar and Ideology: Functional and Cognitive Perspectives (2014), (as co-editor with D. Kelsey) Discourses of Disorder: Riots, Strikes and Protests in the Media (2018), and (as editor) Cognitive Linguistic Approaches to Text and Discourse: From Poetics to Politics (2019).

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