Ideological functions of metonymy: The metonymic location names in Chinese and American political discourses

Min Chen

LAEL, Lancaster University

The talk examines ideological functions of metonymy by exploring the metonymic location names in Chinese and American political discourses. Based on evidence extracted from the self-built corpora by the news articles on Sino-US relations with the aid of USAS Semantic Tagger and the Concordance Tool, the study intends to investigate the ideological motivation underlying the use of PLACE metonymies. Following MIP (Zhang, et al., 2011), it identifies and concludes the (sub)models of PLACE metonymy, namely PLACE FOR INSTITUTION, PLACE FOR INHABITANT, PLACE FOR POWER and PLACE FOR PRODUCT. A statistical analysis of these metonymies based on the chi-square test from the conceptual and discursive parameters presents their distributional features with finer granularity, the coverage commonalities and differentiation of the same metonymies in two discourse communities. The findings reveal that the metonymies, while operative on an embodied basis, are actually tied up with and reinforce the hidden ideologies of discourse communities, and thus become the carrier of the political stance or disposition, and evaluative partiality of two media groups, implicitly exercising the manipulative check on their audiences.

Week 15 2016/2017

Thursday 16th February 2017

Bowland North Seminar Room 26

The talk is based on collaborative research with Yishan Zhou, a postgraduate at College of Foreign languages, University of Shanghai for Science and Technology (USST), China.