Language and ideology: a linguistic analysis of school textbooks from the FRG and the GDR, with special reference to the role of language in socialisation
AbstractThis thesis investigates the interrelationship of language end ideology as exemplified in a corpus of politics textbooks used in East and West German schools. The theoretical framework adopted is a development of the work of M A K Halliday, incorporating also work done in other fields of linguistics, in psychology, pedagogics, political science, and sociology. Part I discusses the corpus and the conceptual framework of the thesis. The role of language in the creation and maintenance of ideology, and the contrasting ways in which this finds expression in political education in the two German states, are discussed. The problematic issue of the standpoint of the linguist is considered. Part II presents the linguistic framework of the thesis; little immediately relevant work had previously been carried out. Halliday’s work provided the most appropriate tool for our analysis. In Part III the texts are discussed from the standpoint of each of the macrofunctions Transitivity, Mood and Theme, and contrasts are drawn where appropriate between the expression of these functions in the two sets of texts. The main overall conclusion of the thesis is that the two sets of texts are typologically distinct and express different universes with respect to the role of the reader and the text; these differences can be perceived in all the linguistic systems investigated. The thesis makes a major contribution to the discussion on the interrelationship of language and ideology, but goes beyond a simple rehearsing of contrasting lexical usage in East and West Germany by also analysing syntactic and semantic features. Examples of linguistic obfuscation, resulting from mismatches between language and ideology, are also discussed. Most importantly, the thesis is an original application of Hallidayan linguistics to German.
PublisherUniversity of Wolverhampton
TypeThesis or dissertation
DescriptionA thesis submitted in partial fulfilment of the requirements of the Council for National Academic Awards for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy
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