"CELLU-LIT" : : a pragmatic study of Body Positive Language on Instagram

University essay from Stockholms universitet/Engelska institutionen

Abstract: In this paper, two female-led Instagram accounts within the Body Positivity movement were analyzed to see what type of linguistic strategies are employed in order to build solidarity with their followers, as well as establish and maintain a shared group identity. The analysis was carried out by utilizing Appraisal Theory as taxonomized by Martin and White (2005) and aspects of Politeness Theory, as taxonomized by Brown and Levinson (1987). The paper found that the two Instagram users linguistically employed several aspects of both theories in order to build and maintain a group identity within a common-identity community. In terms of Politeness Theory the positive politeness strategies were more common than the negative politeness strategies, specifically were the positive politeness strategies employed to build common ground and the strategy of presupposition manipulations the most prevalent. Within the Appraisal theoretical framework, the most common strategies by the Instagram users were the disclaim:deny and the proclaim:pronounce strategies.

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