Publication details

Verbal and Visual Representation of 'US' and 'THEM': British Front-Page News on the Iraq War



Year of publication 2009
Type Appeared in Conference without Proceedings
MU Faculty or unit

Faculty of Arts

Description Using a set of front pages of British newspapers from the period of the current war in Iraq, the presentation offers a multi-modal analysis of the way visual images and verbal text are used in the media to categorize individuals. It is noted how the interplay between the images on the front pages and the verbalizations of the events in headlines explicitly and implicitly constructs two opposed groups, i.e., "us" and "them". The pictorial and verbal categorization of the two groups draws on a broad range of constrasts such as "human" vs "animal", "presence of civilization" vs "absence of civilization", "pleasure" vs "pain", etc. The mutual incompatibility of such categories underlies the perceived incompatibility of the two groups. It is also shown that, although such contrasts are typically subject to affective polarization, i.e., the depiction of the in-group and the out-group in terms of positive self-presentation and negative other-presentation, the contrasts can also be used subversively by the media, e.g., to question the positive values and the self-image that a group typically holds about itself.

You are running an old browser version. We recommend updating your browser to its latest version.

More info