“An outstanding introduction to discourse analysis of written language in an age that is more and more characterized by multilingual, digital, and generically hybrid texts. In an accessible style, Working with Written Discourse illustrates how these texts can be analyzed employing a wide variety of approaches that are critical, multidisciplinary, and productive.”

Critical Discourse Analysis

Critical Discourse Analysis

Critical discourse analysis (CDA) is an approach that highlights the social, ideological and political dimension of discourse. Its practitioners regard discourse in the same way as critical social theorists like Foucault (see Chapter 1)—as something that does not just describe a preexisting reality, but actively shapes our understanding of reality. As Norman Fairclough explains (1995: 219), ‘it is mainly in discourse that consent is achieved, ideologies are transmitted, and practices, meanings, values and identities are taught and learned’. ‘Central to CDA’, say Meriel and Thomas Bloor (2007: 4), ‘is the understanding that discourse is an integral aspect of power and control’.

One strand of research in CDA studies the way power is exercised in spoken interaction, especially in institutional settings like police ...

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