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Text & Talk

An Interdisciplinary Journal of Language, Discourse & Communication Studies

Ed. by Sarangi, Srikant


IMPACT FACTOR 2018: 0.400
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CiteScore 2018: 0.61

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1860-7349
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Volume 33, Issue 4-5

Issues

What do texts do? The context-construing work of news

Annabelle Lukin
Published Online: 2013-08-27 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/text-2013-0024

Abstract

Within the framework of Halliday's text and context relations, with key extensions of this model by Hasan, this paper presents an analysis of a TV news report by Australia's public broadcaster (the ABC) concerning the 2003 “Coalition” invasion of Iraq, in order to present a thesis about the context-construing work done by the register (i.e., functional variety) known as “news.” Sociologists have argued that news is a symbolic commodity, in the business of purveying forms of consciousness. How does news do this? And what, more specifically, can be said about the social process which news texts realize? This paper considers these questions, drawing on the analysis of the texture of the ABC TV news report, based on Hasan's “cohesive harmony” schema. The findings from the analysis are the basis on which I argue the news item relied for its continuity on the derived and abstract notion of “the Iraq war,” while failing to present a coherent picture of the actualized violence perpetrated by the “Coalition” as it rolled out its invasion of Iraq.

Keywords: SFL; media discourse; texture; cohesive harmony; Hasan; Iraq war

About the article

Annabelle Lukin

Annabelle Lukin is Senior Lecturer in Linguistics, in the Centre for Language in Social Life, Macquarie University. Her research interests include the application of Halliday's conception of language to a variety of discourse types, including literature, media, and political discourse. She curates the “SFL linguists” site on VIMEO, and contributes to Wikipedia on linguistic topics, especially on people and ideas from the systemic functional linguistic tradition. Address for correspondence: Department of Linguistics, Macquarie University, North Ryde 2109, New South Wales, Australia 〈 〉.


Published Online: 2013-08-27

Published in Print: 2013-08-19


Citation Information: Text & Talk, Volume 33, Issue 4-5, Pages 523–551, ISSN (Online) 1860-7349, ISSN (Print) 1860-7330, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/text-2013-0024.

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