Background On 23 June 2018, a football team of 12 boys between 11 and 17 and their coach ended up trapped in Tham Luang cave in the North of Thailand, after entering it for a short walk and being surprised by an unexpected flood. As the water filled the cave, for several days the world followed in suspense the fate of the imprisoned team, an emotionally engaging story especially for the young age of the people involved, who were all eventually rescued alive from the cave 22 days after. The worldwide media coverage of the news was immense, and unprecedented as regards speleological accidents. Aims While the rescue operation required a very complex effort, necessitating professional knowledge and experts of multiple disciplines, including geology, hydraulics, medicine to name some, on top of caving and diving, a heated debate among professionals as well as lay people ensued on the possible ways of saving the boys. This study aims to analyse the positions that emerged in the debate as to what the best way to rescue the boys was, comparing expert and non-expert proposals, as well as the different solutions proposed by specialists. These apparently tended to be presented by the press in dichotomic pairs, as polarised positions: the public’s vs the experts’ and, among the latter, the local experts’ vs the international experts’, the British experts’ vs the Americans experts’, and so on. How is this sort of polarisation in the press constructed linguistically and realised discursively? Corpus and methods The analysis will be carried out on a collection of texts from English-speaking news media sources worldwide, including Thai local ones (e.g. The Bangkok Post), collected between 23 June and 31 December 2018, using SketchEngine (Kilgarriff & Rychlý 2003) for the quantitative treatment of the data. The interpretation will be attempted from a the perspectives of science popularisation (Garzone 2006, Gross 2006), and linguistic studies on evaluation and persuasion (Hunston & Thompson 2000, Waddell 2009, Brinol & Petty 2011), especially in the media (Martin & White 2005, Walton 2007). Results This investigation intends to explore polarisation in the media, when stories of high emotional impact are involved and discourses of science and technology are encompassed, thus making the popularisation of expert knowledge also necessary or at least expected. In particular, the role of persuasion in convincing global mass audiences is investigated, to extract possible linguistic strategies and patterns that may recur in similar contexts of communication. References Briñol, P. & R. Petty 2011. A History of Attitude and Persuasion Research. London and New York: Routledge. Garzone, G. 2006. Perspectives on ESP and popularisation. Milan: CUEM. Gross, A. 2006. Starring the Text; The Place of Rhetoric in Science Studies. Carbondale: Southern Illinois University Press. Hunston, S. & G. Thompson (eds) 2000. Evaluation in Text: Authorial Stance and the Construction of Discourse. Oxford: Oxford University Press. Kilgarriff, A., P. Rychlý, P. Smrž & D. Tugwell 2004. Itri-04-08 the sketch engine. Information Technology. Martin, R. & P.R.R. White 2005. The Language of Evaluation. Appraisal in English. New York: Palgrave Macmillan. Waddell, C. 2009. The role of pathos in the decision‐making process: A study in the rhetoric of science policy. Quarterly Journal of Speech, 76(4), 381-400. Walton, D. 2007. Media Argumentation: Dialectic, Persuasion and Rhetoric. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Experts vs. non-experts, polarisation and persuasion in the news media : the Thai cave boys’ rescue / K. Grego. ((Intervento presentato al 5. convegno ESTIDIA Conference : Hybrid Dialogues: Transcending Binary Thinking and Moving Away from Societal Polarizations tenutosi a Napoli nel 2019.
|Titolo:||Experts vs. non-experts, polarisation and persuasion in the news media : the Thai cave boys’ rescue|
|Data di pubblicazione:||set-2019|
|Settore Scientifico Disciplinare:||Settore L-LIN/12 - Lingua e Traduzione - Lingua Inglese|
|Enti collegati al convegno:||European Society for Transcultural and Interdisciplinary Dialogue|
|Citazione:||Experts vs. non-experts, polarisation and persuasion in the news media : the Thai cave boys’ rescue / K. Grego. ((Intervento presentato al 5. convegno ESTIDIA Conference : Hybrid Dialogues: Transcending Binary Thinking and Moving Away from Societal Polarizations tenutosi a Napoli nel 2019.|
|Appare nelle tipologie:||14 - Intervento a convegno non pubblicato|