An examination of positioning in editorials, business and sports commentaries in the Lesotho weekly newspaper, Public Eye

Master Thesis


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University of Cape Town

In this thesis I have examined positioning in editorials, business and sports commentaries in three issues of the Lesotho weekly newspaper, Public Eye. The study is premised on Critical Discourse Analysis (CDA) and selected approaches to media production so as to provide a sociopolitical and cultural context for textual analysis in the study. The study is organized into five chapters. Chapter 1 is an introduction which serves to give the background of this study with brief mention of CDA and media theory as the theoretical orientations of the study. Chapter 2 details the conceptual and theoretical context of the study. The chapter focuses on the approaches to media production and media genres, Systemic Functional Linguistics (SFL), CDA, and strategies of positioning. In Chapter 3, I describe the qualitative methodology on which my data collection and analysis were premised. For my analysis I used the CDA as well as Fairclough's three-dimensional model which I also supplement with metafunctions of SFL. In Chapter 4, I give some background to the newspaper from which my texts are drawn, and I analyze positioning in nine texts – three from each genre. My conclusive remarks draw on differences and similarities in the positioning strategies adopted in each genre. My findings reflect that Public Eye uses various linguistic markers of positioning and show the extent to which these are consistent with the theory explored in this study. Chapter 5 starts with a brief overview of the research, notes its limitations and comments on what I regard as the most interesting findings.

Includes bibliographical references (leaves 104-113).