1st Edition

The Discourse of Public Participation Media From talk show to Twitter

By Joanna Thornborrow Copyright 2015
    210 Pages
    by Routledge

    210 Pages
    by Routledge

    The Discourse of Public Participation Media takes a fresh look at what ‘ordinary’ people are doing on air – what they say, and how and where they get to say it.

    Using techniques of discourse analysis to explore the construction of participant identities in a range of different public participation genres, Joanna Thornborrow argues that the role of the ‘ordinary’ person in these media environments is frequently anything but.

    Tracing the development of discourses of public participation media, the book focusses particularly on the 1990s onwards when broadcasting was expanding rapidly: the rise of the TV talk show, increasing formats for public participation in broadcast debate and discussion, and the explosion of reality TV in the first decade of the 21st century. During this period, traditional broadcasting has also had to move with the times and incorporate mobile and web-based communication technologies as new platforms for public access and participation - text and email as well as the telephone - and an audience that moves out of the studio and into the online spaces of chat rooms, comment forums and the ‘twitterverse’.

    This original study examines the shifting discourses of public engagement and participation resulting from these new forms of communication, making it an ideal companion for students of communication, media and cultural studies, media discourse, broadcast talk and social interaction.

    1. Introduction: Talking on Television and Radio  2. Identity and expertise  3. Performance and the Mediated ‘Self'  4. Discourses of Participation: Telling Stories  5. Discourses of Participation: Opinion and Argument 6. Discourses of Participation: Conflict and Judgement  7. Discourses of Participation: Advice and Makeover  8. Conclusions  References 


    Joanna Thornborrow is Professor of English Language and Linguistics at the University of Western Brittany. She has published widely on forms of media talk and social interaction in edited books and major international journals, and is the author of Power Talk: Language and Interaction in Institutional Discourse (2002).