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ERIC Number: EJ1068849
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2013
Pages: 8
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-2231-3338
Lexicalisation and Discursive Expression of Power in Olusegun Obasanjo's Speeches
Oni, Josephine Funke
Journal on English Language Teaching, v3 n2 p9-16 Apr-Jun 2013
Although language is not power, it encodes power. This is the case with some speeches of former Nigerian President, Olusegun Obasanjo. This paper attempts to unravel the hidden ideological expression of power using critical discourse analysis (CDA) and systemic functional linguistics. Precisely, the paper draws on Fairclough's (2001) members' resources and Halliday's (1970) system of mood and modality as theoretical basis. The data comprise Obasanjo's addresses to public servants and the Nigerian Labour Congress (NLC) in 1978 and 2000 respectively. These are representative of the two political dispensations under which Obasanjo served. The findings show that Obasanjo deploys language as a strategy of suppression by exploiting lexical items with negative expressive values to stifle oppositions as well as make them unpopular. Also, the use of power as strategy of domination is mainly achieved through imperatives which allow the speaker to impose his opinion on others. In addition, declaratives are used to neutralise the asymmetrical power relation that exists between Obasanjo and the Nigerian Labour Congress. Obasanjo's militaristic trait of suppression and domination lends credence to his raw manifestation of power.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Nigeria
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A