Impoliteness and Power in U.S. Political Campaign Debates: The Case of Donald Trump

https://doi.org/10.22146/lexicon.v5i1.41277

Ahmad Wijanarko(1*), Thomas Joko Priyo Sembodo(2)

(1) English Department, Universitas Gadjah Mada
(2) English Department, Universitas Gadjah Mada
(*) Corresponding Author

Abstract


This research examines impoliteness strategies in the context of political campaign debates by the presidential candidates, particularly by Donald Trump against other candidates. The data used in this research, taken from the last three National Republican debates, were Donald Trump’s utterances in which he employed impoliteness strategies. The data were analyzed using Garcia-Pastor’s (2008) impoliteness strategies. The results show that Donald Trump employed the negative-face oriented strategies much more frequently (66.15%) than the positive-face oriented strategies (33.85%). The negative-face oriented strategy ‘state the communicative act(s) as common or shared knowledge’ was the most frequently used (30.38%). These results suggest that for the purposes of asserting power in the debates, Donald Trump tends to use negative-faced oriented impoliteness strategies in his political debates.

Keywords


Donald Trump; impoliteness strategies; political debates; power

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References

Donald Trump Biography. (n.d.). Retrieved March 24, 2016, from http://www.biography.com/people/donald-trump-9511238.

Culpeper, J. (1996). “Towards an Anatomy of Impoliteness.” Journal of Pragmatics 25: 349-367. Print.

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Garcia-Pastor, M. D. (2008). Political campaign debates as zero-sum games: Impoliteness and power in candidates exchanges. In D. Bousfield and M. A. Locher (eds.), Impoliteness in Language: Studies on its Interplay with Power in Theory and Practice. Berlin: Mouton de Gruyter.

Itkowitz, C. (2015). “Donald Trump says we’re all too politically correct. But is that also a way to limit speech?” The Huffington Post 9 December 2015. Web. https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/inspired-life/wp/2015/12/09/donald-trump- says-were-all-too-politically-correct-but-is-that-also-a-way-to-limit-speech/ Accessed in February 28, 2016.

Klotz, P. (1999). “Politeness and Political Correctness: Ideological Impliciations.” Pragmatics 9 (1), pp. 155-161. Yule, George. (1996). Pragmatics. New York: Oxford University Press.



DOI: https://doi.org/10.22146/lexicon.v5i1.41277

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Copyright (c) 2018 Ahmad Wijanarko, Thomas Joko Priyo Sembodo

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