COMMUNICATIVE STRATEGIES AS A TWO-FACETED PHENOMENON: A CROSS-LINGUISTIC STUDY OF INAUGURAL ADDRESSES

Authors

  • Serhiy I. Potapenko Kyiv National Linguistic University, Ukraine

DOI:

https://doi.org/10.32589/2311-0821.1.2020.207235

Keywords:

inaugural address, communicative strategy, tactical move, cross-linguistic study, President Trump, President Zelenskyi, two-faceted method

Abstract

Abstract
The paper combines extralinguistic and linguistic facets of communicative strategies suggesting four synthesized
levels of their application: a complete text of a particular genre subordinated to an overall strategy of achieving
the author's goal; strategic sections carrying maximal textual meanings; tactical moves rendering enhanced
meaning formed according to discourse patterns; turns guiding the choice of linguistic units with minimal meaning.
This approach is applied to a cross-linguistic study of Presidents Trump (2017) and Zelenskyi's (2019) inaugural
addresses.

Résumé
The aim of the paper is to establish a correspondence between the extralinguistic strategic hierarchy
based on tactics and steps subordinated to the addressor's goal and the organization of a text. The paper
proposes a two-faceted method of strategic text analysis comprising four levels: a particular genre
implementing an overall strategy; strategic sections dividing a text into parts with maximal meanings
subordinated to the addressor's communicative strategies; tactical moves consisting of enhanced
meaning embodied in discursive and textual patterns; linguistic turns guiding the choice of units
denoting minimal meaning of five types: referential, predicational, perspectivational, intensificational /
mitigating and argumentational.
The application of the two-faceted method of strategic analysis to the study of the inaugural
addresses by American President Trump (2017) and Ukrainian President Zelenskyi (2019) reveals
the following features of the two texts.
The overall strategy highlighting the policy of the new presidents is embodied in the inaugural
genre. Strategic sections render the sociolinguistic maximal meanings reflecting the specificity
of presidential and semi-presidential political systems of the two countries: the American President
divides his speech into rallying the nation for confrontation and promissory sections while the head
of the Ukrainian state splits his speech into three sections: unification for responsibility, policy outline
and confrontation with the sitting authorities.
The tactical moves rendering enhanced meanings are embedded into the state of affairs
at the time of inauguration which is reflected in unifying for confrontation and transfer of power
in President Trump's inaugural and the path to Europe, external labor migrants and the Donbas moves
in President Zelenskyi's speech.
Linguistic steps provide for the minimal meaning representing social actors from inclusive,
zooming-in, and zooming-out perspectives, characterize them by predicational groups, intensify
their position by repetition, use of numerals and arguments.

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