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ERIC Number: ED552305
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2013
Pages: 119
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: N/A
ISBN: 978-1-2679-2253-3
Twilight of the Slogans: A Heuristic Investigation of Linguistic Memes Using Mixed Methods
Duffy, Curt Paul
ProQuest LLC, Ed.D. Dissertation, Fielding Graduate University
Slogans, or linguistic memes, are short, memorable phrases that are present in commercial, political, and everyday discourse. Slogans propagate similarly to other memes, or cultural units, through an evolutionary mechanism first proposed by Dawkins (1976). Heuristic inquiry, as presented by Moustakas (1990), provided a template from which to explore the novel, undeveloped field involving slogan creation, propagation, and adoption. Building upon an initial concern about the role of slogans in current events and texts such as Brodie's (1996) "Virus of the Mind", I identified the fields circumscribing this phenomenon, including rhetoric, memetics, and critical thinking, and designed a two-phase sequential explanatory mixed methods study to address my research questions. The first phase of the study employed a web survey of 196 respondents to evaluate slogan encounter, confidence, and use, as well as the respondents' interpretations of seven selected slogans. The second phase of the study employed four focus groups of 4 to 5 participants to learn how individuals describe their use of slogans. Results of the study indicate that individuals feel they encounter slogans more frequently than they use slogans, that there is almost no relationship between slogan encounter, confidence, and use and demographic characteristics, and that individuals' interpretations of slogans vary greatly. The results of the study also indicate that the mechanisms of slogan adoption and propagation are largely unconscious, but that training in slogan recognition, evaluation, and critical analysis can help individuals more accurately perceive of their environments and make better decisions. [The dissertation citations contained here are published with the permission of ProQuest LLC. Further reproduction is prohibited without permission. Copies of dissertations may be obtained by Telephone (800) 1-800-521-0600. Web page:]
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Publication Type: Dissertations/Theses - Doctoral Dissertations
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A