* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
LINGUIST List logo Eastern Michigan University Wayne State University *
* People & Organizations * Jobs * Calls & Conferences * Publications * Language Resources * Text & Computer Tools * Teaching & Learning * Mailing Lists * Search *
* *


LINGUIST List 24.3071

Mon Jul 29 2013

Diss: Text/Corpus Ling, Discourse Analysis, Pragmatics: Tabbert: 'Crime through a Corpus: The linguistic construction of ...'

Editor for this issue: Xiyan Wang <xiyanlinguistlist.org>

Date: 29-Jul-2013
From: Ulrike Tabbert <ulritabgooglemail.com>
Subject: Crime through a Corpus: The linguistic construction of offenders, victims and crimes in the German and UK press
E-mail this message to a friend

Institution: University of Huddersfield
Program: MPhil/PhD
Dissertation Status: Completed
Degree Date: 2013

Author: Ulrike Tabbert

Dissertation Title: Crime through a Corpus: The linguistic construction of offenders, victims and crimes in the German and UK press

Linguistic Field(s): Discourse Analysis
                            Pragmatics
                            Text/Corpus Linguistics

Dissertation Director:
Lesley Jeffries
Dan McIntyre

Dissertation Abstract:

In this thesis I analyse and compare the linguistic construction of
offenders, victims and crimes in the British and German press. I have
collected a corpus of British and German newspaper articles reporting on
crime and criminal trials and carried out a corpus linguistic analysis of
this data using the software package Wordsmith Tools (Scott, 2004).

Reports on crime do not construct a neutral representation of offenders. By
employing the tools offered by Critical Stylistics (Jeffries, 2010) and
combining them with Corpus Lingustics I identify the linguistic features
used to pre-convict offenders and to invoke a feeling of insecurity and
fear in the public. The negative associations assigned to crime are
transferred to the offenders and thus construct them as being evil and
label them as deviant (Becker, 1966: 31). The linguistic construction of
the victim ultimately impacts on the construction of offenders because the
two are placed at opposite ends of a morality scale. It is through language
that such ideologically motivated representations of offenders are
constructed and reinforced. The image of the evil-perpretrating monster
constructed in the media as part of societal discourse on crime is based on
ideologies which my research aims to reveal. I argue that the underlying
ideologies for the construction of offenders, victims and crimes in the
British and German press are comparable and that the linguistic triggers
for these in the texts are similar. I found no distinction between the
persona of the offender and his or her crime because offenders only gain a
celebrity-like status following the crime they have committed. This
fascination with crime in the media has roots in the 'backstage nature of
crime' (Surrette, 2009: 240) which satisfies the voyeuristic desire of the
audience.



Read more issues|LINGUIST home page|Top of issue



Page Updated: 29-Jul-2013

Supported in part by the National Science Foundation       About LINGUIST    |   Contact Us       ILIT Logo
While the LINGUIST List makes every effort to ensure the linguistic relevance of sites listed on its pages, it cannot vouch for their contents.