A Corpus-Based Critical Discourse Analysis of Pre-2019 General Elections Reports in Selected Nigerian Newspapers
Keywords:Critical Discourse Analysis, corpus, INEC, Nigerian newspapers, reports
Generally, language experts believe that there are inherent ideologies in language use. The aspect of discourse study that discloses such ideologies is known as Critical Discourse Study (CDA). This paper seeks to exhume the various inherent ideologies that presuppose selected news reports on the Nigeria’s 2019 General Elections in Nigerian newspapers. This study is, however, corpus-based. Scholars have established that discourse is a kind of constructively conditioned public exercise. They believe that power relations exist at different levels of daily social interaction; revealing superiority or inferiority of interlocutors involved. News reports relating to the General Elections were electronically collated from the various newspaper platforms for a sizable language corpus. The name Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) was selected and analysed purposively with the aid of Digital Humanities (DH) tool to observe the frequency of the acronym INEC and the textual context in which it occurs in five newspapers’ reports about the electoral body via the authority it gives; the warning it issues, and the appeal it makes to the stakeholders. The paper finds out that the negative perceptions of many observers about the elections have actually been predicted by the various reports in the newspapers, prior to the elections. The paper concludes that reporters of news items do not account for issues concerning electoral body with the same constructive and destructive dispositions; and this gives room for subjectivity and prejudice.
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