Commodified Discourses, Commodifying Discourses: In Pursuit of a Theoretical Model on the Constitutive Functioning of Academic Discourse in Marketization of Higher Education


Islamic Azad University-Maragheh Branch


Inspired by Fairclough's suggestion of the idea of commodification in higher education, particularly in terms of "the marketization of the discursive practices of universities" (1993, p. 143), the author of the present paper proposes a theoretical basis within which the constitutive functioning of academic discourse in the mentioned process can be understood.  In this attempt, Althusser's chain of interpellation is proposed as a rigorous conceptual framework to demonstrate the interdependence of the different components of academic life.  As the major contribution of the present argument, the adapted schema demonstrates a dynamic relationship among university as an institution, academic communicative events, academic practice, academic discourse and the identities of the participants of academic context.  The paper is concluded with some implications of the argument for EAP research and pedagogy.