chapter  13
20 Pages

Pragmatics and critical discourse studies

WithAlexandra Polyzou

This chapter focuses on aspects of and work within Critical Discourse Analysis. The difference in scope, as well as the overlap, between Pragmatics and critical discourse studies (CDS) is reflected in conferences and publications focusing primarily on Pragmatics or CDS. The former often happily include applications of pragmatics for critical analyses of discourse dealing with issues of ideology and power in media, political, medical, institutional and intercultural contexts including the branch of 'emancipatory pragmatics'. The chapter demonstrates the application of the framework in relation specifically to gender-related ideological assumptions underlying a lifestyle magazine text. It distinguishes between existential presuppositions, merely presupposing the existence of something, and lexical choices, which frame they said 'something', the referent, in particular ways. The two interact in conjunction to evoke ideological beliefs. Throughout the text it is taken for granted, through existential presuppositions, that there is a male partner in the female reader's life, and that there is one partner.