Language and Power Essay

Only available on StudyMode
  • Topic: Driving under the influence, Drunk driving in the United States, Drunk driving
  • Pages : 5 (1718 words )
  • Download(s) : 581
  • Published : May 11, 2013
Open Document
Text Preview
Language and power essay
How do the texts attempt to influence the reader? You should refer in detail to the texts and to relevant ideas from language study Consider
* Lexical and grammatical features
* Graph logical features
* The assumptions made about the audience

Text E is a flyer published which illustrates influential power through its language choices to try and informally educate the reader of the consequences of drunk driving, ergo persuading them not to drink and drive. Text D has a similar purpose of persuading people to drive sensibly and not speed, but its power is more instrumental as it’s a poster created by the government and heavily lies on graphology and the pragmatics of the graphology to show how it’s a crime and the consequences will be great.

It maintains its level of informality through the lexis, using many colloquialisms such as the pre-modifier “hefty” when talking about fines; rather than just stating the fact of the true cost, plus others like “forking out” and “cadge”, perhaps as men are affected by the hidden prestige within colloquialisms. These counteract the boring list layout of the information, making the flyer more interesting encouraging the reader to read on and become an ideal reader, whilst also playing to a young or less educated audience, e.g. saying “get done” when talking about being caught and punished, stopping it becoming formal and legalised which was dissuade the reader from reading.. It also uses the lexis to appeal to young audiences through talking about “parties” and “mates” instead of the perhaps more grown up equivalent phrases for these.

It could also be suggested that the piece was made more appealing to male readers by using arguably sexist terms towards women like calling them a “sexy piece” or saying it could stop the men from having “steamy backseat fumblings”. This could also help to influence the reader as these are things stereotypically desired by men, and they’re being told that drink driving would stop these possibilities, inferring a use of instrumental power as this would be a type of ‘punishment’ or consequence.

Text E also uses lexis to make the text more enjoyable in a way, encouraging the reader to read on, for example using onomatopoeia “BANG” or alliteration in “Don’t drink and drive” makes it catchier, creating a sense of rhythm/rhyme combined with how all the words are monosyllabic. This puts more emphasis on it making the reader think about it more, helping to convince them, while the hard Ds in “Don’t Drink and Drive” helps to create a strong statement. The fact that the work “Die” is hidden within “drive” pragmatically suggests that drinking and driving will kill you, subtly warning of the risks, which are made personal to the reader as the flyer uses the 2nd person pronoun “you” to create a direct connection with the reader so they know this does apply to/involve them; so there's no way of avoiding it.

The declarative sentences and use of the modal “will” was used repeatedly to put emphasis on the fact that the consequences are definite and there would be no way to get out of them, convincing the reader that if they don’t want to suffer, they should follow the law and drive sober plus the compound sentences used link the consequences with the personal negative impacts they would have on the reader.

Text D also uses lexis to influence its reader, using the 1st person pronoun modal “I’ll” as emotional blackmail, stating that the girl in the image is telling them directly that they definitely will kill her if they speed. The positions the audience, personalising the consequences and making them realise that if they speed and hit a child, they will kill her, with terrible consequences for not only her and her family, but also themselves, as even if it was an accident it was still breaking the law and manslaughter. It pragmatically suggests that she’s imploring you to rethink, asking you to help keep her and other...
tracking img