Ozyumenko V.I. Social Reality Formation in Media Discourse: Information Ambiguity Strategy

DOI: https://doi.org/10.15688/jvolsu2.2019.3.5

Vladimir I. Ozyumenko

Candidate of Sciences (Philology), Associate Professor, Department of Foreign Languages, Peoples' Friendship University of Russia

Miklukho-Maklaya St., 6, 117198 Moscow, Russia

ozyumenko-vi@rudn.university

https://orcid.org/0000-0001-7587-3007


Abstract. Modern media have become an important ideological tool in conveying and forming a certain view of the world and attitude towards it. While complying with the interests of the power structures, they shape public opinion by means of increasingly sophisticated media technologies and techniques. The article introduces multilevel means of creating ambiguity of a media text: verbs with the semantic component 'without proof', lexical units with semantics of uncertainty, means of expressing epistemic modality, interrogative headings, etc. The regular use of these means observed in the media enables the author to consider ambiguity as one efficient strategy of public opinion manipulation. The data for the study were obtained from quality British and American newspapers and news websites that cover events related to Russia. By using the methods of linguistic pragmatics and sociolinguistics as well as critical discourse analysis, it was proved that the ambiguity is a widely spread method in modern media, it enables journalists to write about unconfirmed facts and introduce a certain attitude towards them into the minds of the audience without bearing any responsibility for unsubstantiated information.

Key words: media discourse, persuasion, manipulation, ambiguity, public opinion, English.

Citation. Ozyumenko V.I. Social Reality Formation in Media Discourse: Information Ambiguity Strategy. Vestnik Volgogradskogo gosudarstvennogo universiteta. Seriya 2. Yazykoznanie [Science Journal of Volgograd State University. Linguistics], 2019, vol. 18, no. 3, pp. 64-75. (in Russian). DOI: https://doi.org/10.15688/jvolsu2.2019.3.5

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