Persuasion in Rhetoric : A Critical Metaphor Analysis of the Use of Metaphor in Pro-war Political Speeches

University essay from Umeå universitet/Institutionen för språkstudier

Abstract: This paper is investigating how metaphors are used in political speeches to achieve persuasion. By analyzing three speeches dealing with the Iraqi war 2003 and delivered by Bush, Blair and Howard, I try to find out the similarities and differences in how metaphors are constructed, how they are used as a persuasive technique, and lastly if the different military contribution of the three countries affected how metaphors are constructed. The main theory used in this study is Critical Metaphor Analysis suggested by Charteris-Black (2011). The analysis suggests that the speeches contain different kinds of metaphors like personification, the POLITICS IS BUSINESS metaphor and JOURNEY metaphors. Metaphors are generally found to be used in a similar way in order to show that the politicians are ‘right’. Still, there are some differences that could be attributed to the different military contribution of the countries and their different role in the war. 

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