Critical Discourse Analysis of Two Political Speeches in Light of Bakhtin's Dialogism

Authors

1 Azarbaijan Shahid Madani University,Tabriz, Iran

2 Department of English Language and Literature, Azarbaijan Shahid Madani University, Tabriz, Iran

3 Department of English Language and Literature, Azarbaijabn University, Tabriz, Iran

Abstract

 
Bakhtin's dialogism respects differences and appreciates dialogue. Different fields of the humanities are increasingly apprehending dialogism; however, few studies have applied it in the realm of critical discourse analysis. The present study presupposes that a fundamental similarity exists between dialogism and critical discourse analysis in their respect for different human voices to be heard. To present a study embracing dialogism in the given field, this research analyzed Martin Luther King's "I Have a Dream" and Malcolm X's "The Ballot or the Bullet", as two leading political speeches in the history, using two master concepts of dialogism, self and other, in line with utterance, polyphony, centripetal and centrifugal forces and architectonics. The results showed that the explored political utterances were the locus of struggle between centrifugal and centripetal forces through which self-other architectonics in "The Ballot or the Bullet" appeared primarily in the form of binary opposition and relative dominance of one voice; in contrast, the architectonics in "I Have a Dream" showed various examples of polyphony and reconciliation of the voices. The domination of a single voice in the former and plurality of the voices in the latter yielded the speech utterances respectively as the monologic and dialogic utterances where covert maintenance of power in monologism, in contrast to dialogism, can serve the aim of critical discourse analysis to study the relation between discourse and power.

Keywords