Title: Exploring the Significance of Context in Meaning: Speech Act Features of Performative Political- Speeches of President Umaru Musa Yar ̓Adua
Author(s): Susan Akinkurolere
Year 2020
Publisher: Athens Journal of Humanities and Arts
File: PDF
Keywords: Features Speech Act

Political speeches, no doubt, have been object and subject of diverse linguistic and non-linguistic analyses for decades. Apparently, communication is the most vital tool in politicking within and outside Nigeria as politicians vehemently trade in various discourses and arguments through fliers, pamphlets, manifestoes, public statements and speeches. In fact, political speeches are occasioned by different contexts or situations. Hence, the research portrays context as an integral part in speaker ̓s intention and hearer ̓s interpretation. Specifically, performative political-speeches are selected to explore the significance of the context in negotiating pragmatic meaning through the frame work of Speech Act Theory. The data are drawn from two speeches of Nigerian President Umaru Musa Yar ̓Adua based on periodisation (2008-2009). The Speech Act analysis of these action political discourses provides the understanding that political leaders employ unique speech act types which are mainly assertive when delivering performative political speeches. The reason for this is premised on the fact that the speeches are performative and delivered by a President in a democratic government. The study, therefore, recommends a contrastive analysis of performative and ceremonial political speeches of the President or other political leaders to further demonstrate the influence of
context on speech act patterns.


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