This monograph examines the rhetorical nature and function of
representations of the future in political discourse, focusing on political
actors’ use of hegemonic images of future “reality” to achieve their
political goals. It argues that a key ideological dimension of political
rhetoric lies in politicians’ use of projections of the future to legitimate
policies and actions. This argument is grounded in systemic-functional
and critical discourse analyses of the “Bush Doctrine,” the U.S. policy
response to the September 11 terrorist attacks which sanctioned a
“preemptive” military posture. By focusing on the discursive construction
of the future, this project addresses a lacunae in critical discourse
studies and calls attention to the crucial role that the discourse and
practice of “futurology” has played in post-Cold War politics and society.
It will be of value to scholars interested in the discourses of politics, the
“war on terror,” U.S. national security, and futurology.