DISCOURSE ANALYTICAL PERSPECTIVES OF DONALD TRUMP’S LINGUISTIC BEHAVIOUR

Keywords: CDA, hyperbole, implicitness, presuppositions, “trial balloon”

Abstract

The paper is an attempt to explore some of the most distinctive and unique characteristics that define the linguistic representation of Donald Trump's communicative behavior as it manifests itself during his 2016 presidential campaign rallies, press conferences and various TV appearances and official speeches (delivered prior to and after assuming presidency). By means of critical discourse analysis (CDA), the author tries to identify what linguistic means might contribute to making Trump appealing to his base. Since he is commonly believed to appeal to emotions in his electorate, the author examines instances where he persuades and manipulates the public by generating an emotional response in them. More specifically, the study explores such affective components of communicative behavior as repetitions, hyperbole, attaching labels and, finally, his use of implicit meaning and presuppositions. Our corpus suggests that activating the affective component is strategic for Trump, although it is also true that appeal to emotions is natural and often intuitive on his part. Repetitions and negative labeling make sure that certain ideas become permanent in the minds of prospective voters and that opponents are subconsciously associated with something negative. Hyperbole is revealed to take different forms and serve several functions in his speech. Finally, the paper discusses implicitness in Trump’s language, notably existential, propositional and value assumptions, which help 'unpack' ideas embedded in his propositions.

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Published
2021-02-05
How to Cite
Potiatynyk, U., & Orshynska, T. (2021). DISCOURSE ANALYTICAL PERSPECTIVES OF DONALD TRUMP’S LINGUISTIC BEHAVIOUR. Scientific Journal of Polonia University, 40(3), 67-76. https://doi.org/10.23856/4009
Section
LANGUAGE, CULTURE, COMMUNICATION