Socio Cognitive Model Domination Ideology English Language

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This study aims to explore the veiled relationship among the language and its users. And how people use language and save their face. This article based upon the Van Dajik's socio cognitive model (2002).

CDA scholars are typically concerned in the manner discourse (re)produces social domination, that is, the power abuse of one group over others, and how dominated groups may discursively resist such abuse. Words are not to be considered neutral but as having some exact meanings which are not always understandable to all readers or spectators. Through the analysis of three political talk shows of Private TV Channels, here is an attempt to show that how everybody in this world from any school of thought protect their ideology and represent it.Key Words: CDA, Socio cognitive model, domination, Ideology, TV channels


Language is a mode of communication. It is a necessary tool of communication and collaboration among human beings. It is a system of communication which entails on a set of sounds and written symbols which are used by the people of a specific country or zone for communication and interaction.

Language use to mention various channels of communication involving perceptible symbols, verbal and non-verbal sounds and gestures. The aim of language is to communicate with one and other. "Language is a purely human and non-instinctive method of communicating ideas, emotions and desires by means of voluntarily produced symbols."(Edward Sapir, Language: An Introduction to the Study of Speech. Harcourt, Brace and Company, 1921).The use of language is an integral part of being human. Language and abstract thoughts are closely concomitant, and many people think that these two characteristics above all extricate human beings from animals. Whatever we say or express through our words always contains some meanings and represent our perceptions. "A language is a system of arbitrary vocal symbols by means of which a social group cooperates."(B.

Bloch and G. Trager, Outline of Linguistic Analysis. Waverly Press, 1942).Language plays an important role in every field of life particularly in politics. In fact every action influenced and played by the language we use. There are always some methods to understand the hidden meanings and perceiving language.

And the way we perceive language builds the foundation of social construction with one another in a specific society. Scientific study of a language is called 'linguistics'. There are some branches of linguistics which helps us to understand the actual meanings of an utterance and some branches of linguistics which tried to explain the relationship between language and perception.

Because the way we use language represents our point of view and intentions about a particular issue which can be political or social. Language contains two coverings which are surface and real meanings or denotative and connotative meanings which fluctuates from each other. It is the aim of discourse to expose the working and context of language."..Using a language involves something that goes beyond the acquisition of structures and the ability to make appropriate choices in the realization of the particular language functions." (Yalden, 1987, p 39).Every language finds its ways in discourse and in order to recognize the actual meanings of a text or speech it is obligatory to get into the core of that particular text or speech to go for the context. It is not an easy job to recognize the contextual meanings of a text or a speech.

Discourse always puts light on the darker corners of a texts or speech which are concealed for a common reader of listeners. Because it is demonstrated that our words are not neutral and always have some hidden meanings according to political and social conditions.

Discourse & Discourse Analysis:

The term discourse analysis was first use by Zelling Harris as the name for 'a method for the analysis of the speech or writing for contributing descriptive linguistics beyond the limit of a single sentence at a time and correlating culture and language.' (Harris 1952)The word discourse is an elastic term (both for speech and text). Originally the word discourse comes from Latin 'discurus' which denotes 'conversation speech'."Discourse analysis is the study of how stretches of language used in communication assume meaning, purpose and unity for their users: the quality of coherence. (Encyclopedic dictionary of Applied Linguistics by Keith Johnson and Helen Johnson, 1998)"Discourse is the way in which language is used socially to convey broader historical meanings. It is language identify by social conditions of its use (by who is using it or under what conditions it is used).

Language can never be neutral because it bridges our personal and social world". (HENRY AND CARO, 2002)There is no agreement among linguists as to the use of the term discourse in that some use it in reference to texts, while others claim it denotes speech which is for instance illustrated by the following definition: "Discourse (is) a continuous stretch of (especially spoken) language larger than a sentence, often constituting a coherent unit such as a sermon, argument, joke, or narrative" (Crystal 1992:25).Discourse explains that how texts relate to contexts of situation and context of culture. How texts are produced as a social practice, what texts tell us about incidents and what people think and belief. Discourse helps us to divulge the obscured meanings of a text or speech. It discusses the meanings on macro level.

In discourse analysis background knowledge of any incident is very essential. For example if word "Black Death" (1348) mentioned anywhere (text or speech) it will be obvious for us to understand the entire story of spread of disease and in result casualties of humans. Background knowledge is very important to understand the context of a text or speech. It is evident that words are never unbiased and everything which is written or spoken has some meanings and through discourse analysis those meanings become transparent.

It is discourse analysis which facilitates the analyzer from seeing language as abstract to seeing it as having some meanings related to certain conditions like historical, social or political.


As the term "critical" is exposing itself that deep analysis of text and speech and observing its good and bad aspects completely. Critically analyzing a written text and spoken is known as critical discourse analysis. CDA investigates the veiled meaning in the text; it is not easy for readers to acquire the tangible and factual meanings without the application of CDA."Critical Discourse Analysis (CDA) is a type of discourse analytical research that primarily studies the way social power abuse, dominance, and inequality are enacted, reproduced and resisted by text and talk in the social and political context." (Van Dijk, 2001, p. 352)"CDA investigates, and aims at illustrating, "relationships between the text and its social conditions, ideologies and power-relations." (Wodak, 1996: 20).CDA leads to critical study of any written or spoken text.

As in political talk shows sometimes people didn't want to divulge the thing and they only reply in yes or saying no CDA helps to disclose the hidden meaning behind the speaker's speech.Fairclough and Wodak (1997: 271-80) summarize the main tenets of CDA as follows:1. CDA addresses social problems.2. Power relations are discursive.3.

Discourse constitutes society and culture.4. Discourse does ideological work.5. Discourse is historical.6. The link between text and society is mediated.7. Discourse analysis is interpretative and explanatory8. Discourse is a form of social action."CDA is concerned with studying and analyzing written texts and spoken words to reveal the discursive sources of power, dominance, inequality, and bias and how these sources are initiated, maintained, reproduced, and transformed within specific social, economic, political, and historical contexts" (van Dijk, 1988).As already mentioned that CDA's main point is about the power and use of power which is indicated in the text and talk of those who struggle to preserve their influence over others, so it is understood that tyranny, inequity and biasness would be left unchallenged if the text is not observed and analyzed intensely and critically. "Given the power of the written and spoken word, CDA is necessary for describing, interpreting, analyzing, and critiquing social life reflected in text" (Luke, 1997).As we already know according to above stated explanations and definitions that every person who speaks or write any text definitely has an ideology and defend that ideology by direct or indirect ways.

To unveiled those motifs and understand them entirely is called critical discourse analysis. In this article we are going to analyze different political party's ideologies and different point of views about the "drone attacks" on Pakistan.



Unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVS), also known as drones, are aircraft either controlled by 'pilots' from the ground or increasingly, originally follow a pre-programmed mission. There are dozens of different types of drones. Basically they can be divided into two categories: those that are used for reconnaissance and surveillance purposes and those that are armed with missiles and bombs. According to the US Department of Defense, a drone, or unmanned aircraft, is an "aircraft or balloon that does not carry a human operator and is capable of flight under remote control or autonomous programming." (DEP'T OF DEFENSE, 331 JOINT PUBLICATION 1-02, DICTIONARY OF MILITARY AND ASSOCIATED TERMS (2010)(Amended July 15, 2012). Use of drones has grown quickly in recent years because it is very cheaper than manned aircraft and can stay aloft for many hours.

As drones are controlled by remotes so there is no danger for flight crew's safety or other human needs. Drones are not new there origin can be traced from the World War I. (Time Line of UAVs, PBS, Throughout the 20th century they were used for surveillance purposes, most notably during the Gulf War and conflict of Balkan in the 1990s. (Mary Ellen O'Connell, Unlawful Killing with Combat Drones: A Case Study of Pakistan, 2004-2009 3 (Notre Dame Law School Legal Studies Research Paper No.

09-43, 2010). The first armed drones were flown for Afghanistan in October 2001. (Eric Schmitt, Threats and Responses: The Battlefield: US Would Use Drones to Attack Targets, N.Y.TIMES (Nov. 6, 2002), In the aftermath of the September 11, 2011 attacks, the Bush administration began acampaign of 'targeted killing' against suspected members of Al Qaeda and other armedgroups. (Q&A: US Targeted Killings and International Law, HUMAN RIGHTS WATCH (Dec.

19, 2011), The strike in Yemen set the precedent for what would later become a fullscale program of targeted killing by drone in Pakistan. After the US invasion ofAfghanistan, a number of Taliban fighters fled across the border into Pakistan and inparticular FATA, which borders Afghanistan. (Brian Glyn Williams, The CIA's Covert Predator Drone War in Pakistan, 2004-2010: The HistoryOf an Assassination Campaign, 33 STUDIES IN CONFLICT & TERRORISM 871, 873-74 (2010).British and US Reaper and Predator drones are physically in Afghanistan and Iraq, control is via satellite from Nellis and Creech USAF base outside Las Vegas, Nevada. Ground crews launch drones from the conflict zone, then operation is handed over to controllers at video screens in specially designed trailers in the Nevada desert.

One person 'flies' the drone, another operates and monitors the cameras and sensors, while a third person is in contact with the "customers", ground troops and commanders in the war zone. While armed drones were first used in the Balkans war, their use has dramatically escalated in Afghanistan, Iraq and in the CIA's undeclared war in Pakistan. (Chris Cole and Jim Wright published in Peace News in January 2010).

Pakistan and Drone Attacks:

Pakistan-US relations are very complex and convoluted by continuing drone attacks. Initially Pakistan appeared to support US strikes secretly. From 2004 through at least 2007, the Pakistani government claimed accountability for attacks that had, in fact, been led by the US, thus permitting the US to reject any participation. (Brian Glyn Williams, Death from the Skies: An Overview of the CIA's Drone Campaign in Pakistan, 29 TERRORISM MONITOR 8, 8 (2009); infra Chapter 2: Numbers). In 2008, according to cables revealed by Wikileaks, Pakistan's Prime Minister reportedly told US Embassy officials, "I don't care if they [conduct strikes] as long as they get the right people.

We'll protest in the National Assembly and then ignore it." (US Embassy Cables: Pakistan Backs US Drone Attacks in Tribal Areas, GUARDIAN (Nov. 30, 2010), In 2009, both Pakistan's Prime Minister and its Foreign Minister openly celebrated the drone strike that killed Baitullah Mehsud, the suspected leader of Tehreek-e-Taliban, Pakistan (TTP), an armed group that promotes terrorist attacks inside Pakistan. (Shuja Nawaz, Drone Attacks Inside Pakistan-Wayang or Willing Suspension of Disbelief, 12 CONFLICT & SECURITY 79, 80 (2011).It is very important to note that some segments of Pakistani population including FATA, support drone attacks that they kill terrorists who are very dangerous and a cause of constant fear for common people.

Some supports military effort to attack and kill terrorist groups. However, it is clear that the majority of the population against drone practices.A Pew Research Poll conducted in 2012 found only 17 per cent of Pakistanis favor the USconducting "drone strikes against leaders of extremist groups, even if they areconducted in conjunction with the Pakistani government." (PEW RESEARCH CENTER, PAKISTANI PUBLIC OPINION EVER MORE CRITICAL OF US 2 (2012), available at survey shows that 94 % Pakistani believes that drone attacks kill innocent people and 74 % say they are not necessary to defend Pakistan from extremist organizations.

From June 2004 through mid-September 2012, available data indicate that drone strikes killed 2,562-3,325 people in Pakistan, of whom 474-881 were civilians, including 176 children. (The Bureau of Investigative Journalism)Drones have become the subject of significant public debate now a day. People are raising their voices against the unlawful and innocent people killing in drone attacks. Pakistani officials have been very vocal particularly in 2012, in their opposition to ongoing drone attacks in FATA. They have asserted that the strikes are unlawful and against the sovereignty of Pakistan.

Present paper is concerned with the CDA of different political parties of Pakistan on the issue of drone strikes and killing of innocent people.


Critical discourse analysis (CDA) is a type of discourse analytical research that primarilystudies the way social power abuse, dominance, and inequality are enacted,reproduced, and resisted by text and talk in the social and political context. Withsuch dissident research, critical discourse analysts take explicit position, and thuswant to understand, expose, and ultimately resist social inequality.CDA also focuses on how discourse structures influence mental representations. Atthe global level of discourse, topics may influence what people see as the most importantInformation of text or talk, and thus correspond to the top levels of their mentalmodels.

Critical Discourse Analysis (CDA) leads us to the study of unhidden meanings behind the anything written or spoken. Van Dajik socio cognitive model (2002) is used for the analysis. Every political party has its hidden agenda which they don't want to reveal in front of anyone. So CDA helps us to reveal the truth.

Its being a long time we are seeing that political parties all over the world have conflicts with each other and they cannot ask anything directly so they use different ways to taunt them and through CDA we are able to know their hidden motives.


Pakistani news channels programs were taken for the analysis. The most viewed and popular programs are taken for CDA Capital Talk (Geo News) & Kal Tak (Express News). These programs were telecasted on 8th of October, at that time drones was much highlighted issue and every news channel highlights this issue. Following programs are listened very carefully and then focal points are judged and what was the CDA in that points.

Both programs are analyzed in the same way and then a final conclusion is built.




Article name: Socio Cognitive Model Domination Ideology English Language essay, research paper, dissertation