Although CDA and CDP emphasize different aspects of language use, they both view language as social interaction, and are concerned with the social contexts in which discourse is embedded. After first studying CDA and CDP separately, I can now combine them as an actual applicable approach for the regarding research on the different discourses on climate change.
Although CDA is usually applied on media discourse, and rarely on public discourse, the concerning approach to discourse analysis can be quite useful for analyzing public discourse anyway. When studying people’s everyday conversations, one could follow the same sort of procedure as when studying media messages. Public discourse, like media discourse, is very influential as well, hence the motivation to study this type of discourse in the first place could be the same is as well. Public discourse, like media discourse, is deeply rooted in our daily lives and above all, it is based on interaction and interpretation. You see, what a sender says within a conversation could be interpreted rather wrong by the receiver, or at least different from what the sender initially intended to say, simply because sender and receiver find themselves in complete odd contexts. So when analyzing public discourse one should focus on language and interaction, that is, the way people talk, as well as the context, that is, what people talk about. What a subject says (the text) is shaped by its surroundings (the context), but what a subject says is also shaping its surroundings. Public discourses, like media discourses, are influenced influences, for on the one hand, they are continuously constructed and consist of traces of bigger discursive practices, which in turn consist of bigger social cultural practices. On the other hand, public discourses construct an image of reality and the people within that reality. And so one could apply the CDA method on public discourse as well, and identify the different genres and discourses that are drawn upon in a conversation and how they work together and even transform one another during that particular conversation. One could also apply a linguistic and semiotic analysis, and look at the way a conversation is structured, how clauses are linked in complex or compound sentences, the make up of these clauses in particular, and the choice of words.
Although CDP is usually applied on public discourse, and rarely on public discourse, the concerning approach to discourse analysis can be quite useful for analyzing media discourse anyway. When studying media messages, one could follow the same sort of procedure as when studying people’s everyday conversations. The basic principles of both approaches are the same: discourse is a product and producer, discourse is a master and slave, discourse influences and is being influenced, therefore discourse is an influenced influence. That’s why both CDA and CDP emphasize the significance of not simply focussing on texts on their own (which are the products, as well as the producers of discourse), but on their contexts as well (which are the producers, as well as, guess what, the products of discourse). And although at first CDP seems to implement a somewhat different method of analysis, after comparison the concepts interpretative repertoires and ideological dilemmas could might as well be applied on media discourse. In the case of interpretative repertoires one would wonder whether
one recognizes some sort of division in how the media talk about a specific subject, with one side employing a negative, pessimistic or somewhat sober repertoire, and the other side employing a positive, fanatic or completely complex repertoire. Furthermore, in discourse, and thus in media discourse, one can always identify ideological dilemmas, which are always filtering through in every media message. People always utilize certain utterances of common sense, for these ought to legitimate certain actions or events, but which collide with other utterances (expressed by someone else or the same person, in an earlier or later stage of the discourse) and therefore elicit argument. In short, when analyzing media discourse one could very well focus on how the sender of a media message addresses the receiving subject, and constructs the other subjects within that media message. What remains is a concrete method, derived from CDA and CDP, to actually analyze media discourse and public discourse on climate change, and ultimately, finally solve the research question of this thesis.
3.1 Media Discourse Analysis applied to Climate Change Controversy
3.2 Public Discourse Analysis applied to Climate Change Controversy
In order to be able to solve the research question of this thesis…
The Climate Change Controversy
What is the media discourse and public discourse on climate change within both the US and the Netherlands,
and what is the relationship between the two kinds of discourse and between the two countries?
… I have tried to carefully set up an analytical method, which step by step, covers every single, separate section of the statement. In accordance with the theory, the method first makes a twofold, in which the US and Dutch media discourseand the US and Dutch public discourse are analyzed separately, after which the different domains of discourse (that is media discourse and public discourse) and the different countries in which these different domains of discourse occur
(that is the US and The Netherlands) are crosswise compared. So that at last, I can indeed answer the questions
(Influenced Influence: US Media Discourse versus US Public Discourse) what the US media discourse and the US public discourse on climate change are, and how the US media discourse and the US public discourse on climate change relate, (Influenced Influence: Dutch Media Discourse versus Dutch Public Discourse) what the Dutch media discourse and the Dutch public discourse on climate change are, and how the Dutch media discourse and the Dutch public discourse on climate change relate, and (Cross Comparison) how the different countries in which different discourses occur relate,
that is how the US and Dutch media discourses on climate change relate, how the US and Dutch public discourses on climate change relate and how the relationship between the US media discourse and public discourse and the relationship between the Dutch media discourse and public discourse relate.
3.1 Media Discourse Analysis applied to Climate Change Controversy
What? Newspaper Discourse
Why? I am analysing media discourse on climate change. However, the entire ‘media’ is way too broad a field of research,
so I have narrowed it down to one specific discipline, which is print media, or newspapers. Every country has them, everyone reads them, all the news is in there, and so newspapers are a good representation of the news-facility and media landscape within a certain time or place. Papers are also very researchable, for they are already written out, often documented texts. For both countries I have analyzed one newspaper. The newspaper, actually. In the US that would be The New York Times, because even though it comes third in the list of US newspapers with the widest circulation (after USA Today and The Wall Street Journal), it is the largest metropolitan newspaper in the US, regarded as a national newspaper of record and named “The Gray Lady” for its staid appearance and style. Its focus is on an elite, relatively high educated audience, which suits the public I am applying my discourse analysis on: Berkeley University students. Besides, The Times typically represents the biased US media landscape, for it is owned by The New York Times Company, which publishes 18 other newspapers and holds Arthur Ochs Sulzberger Jr. as chairman, whose family is one of the US newspaper dynasties and has controlled the paper since 1896. Therefore the paper has often been accused of being biased, that is, giving too little or too much coverage to events for reasons not related to objective journalism.
In the Netherlands a similar sort of newspaper would be De Volkskrant, which doesn’t have the widest circulation either, but, after the biggest, but bad and babbling paper De Telegraaf, the somewhat simplistic Algemeen Dagblad and the free tabloids, does have the most respected reputation. Its focus is on an elite, relatively high educated audience, which suits the public I am applying my discourse analysis on: Erasmus University students. Besides, of all the Dutch newspapers
De Volkskrant comes closest to The Times, for if one considers it being biased, its coverage leans to the left well.
When? March 2009
Why? 2009 is a crucial year in the international effort to address climate change, culminating in the United Nations Climate Change Conference in Copenhagen, which will be held at the end of the year. In 2007, parties agreed to shape an ambitious and effective international response to climate change, to be agreed at Copenhagen. The Ad Hoc Working Group on Further Commitments for Annex I Parties under the Kyoto Protocol (AWG-KP) and the Ad Hoc Working Group on Long-term Cooperative Action under the Convention (AWG-LCA) will operate in full negotiating mode in 2009 to advance work towards meeting their respective mandates. (UNFCCC, http://unfccc.int/)
The next major round of negotiations will be the Bonn Climate Change Talks (which is the seventh session of the AWG-KP and the fifth session of the AWG-LCA), for all Parties and observer States to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change and its Kyoto Protocol, all United Nations Secretariat units and bodies, specialized agencies and related organizations and all intergovernmental organizations (IGOs) and non-governmental organizations (NGOs) admitted as observers by the Conference of the Parties at its previous sessions. The Bonn Climate Change Talks will take place between Sunday 29 March and Wednesday 8 April 2009 in Hotel Maritim, Bonn, and is the first of three planned negotiating sessions before COP 15 in Copenhagen in December. (UNFCCC, Bonn Climate Change Talks, March 2009, http://unfccc.int/meetings/intersessional/bonn_09/items/4753.php)
Although the interest in environmental issues is largely determined by the state of the economy (which was pretty bad at this particular time), unexpected incidents (which did not occur at this particular time) and the competition for attention with other issues in the political arena (financial crisis anyone?), the interest in environmental issues does increase when a completely new product is introduced (such as an IPCC Synthesis Report) or a unique event takes place (Breeman, 2008). Meaning that in the run-up to the Bonn Climate Change Talks one may expect an international increase in media attention on climate change. Therefore I have specifically chosen to analyze US and Dutch newspapers during the month of March. One month is a well demarcated, doable timeframe, but is also still wide enough to provide significant, varied information.
How? I have collected the newspapers through Lexis Nexis, an online database which contains over 10.000 newspapers, magazines and other printed media from all over the world, including The Times and De Volkskrant. In order to collect as many articles on climate change as possible, I have searched Lexis Nexis using the following climate change key words:
De Volkskrant: Klimaat, Klimaatverandering, Klimaatcrisis, Klimaatdebat, Klimaatproblematiek, Broeikaseffect, Milieu, Opwarming van de Aarde
The Times: Climate, Climate Change, Climate Crisis, Climate Debate, Climate Change Controversy, Greenhouse Effect, Environment, Global Warming
Since I specifically chose to analyze The Times and De Volkskrant during the month of March, I ended up with approximately 30 issues per paper, which makes 60 issues in total. Although I initially intended to integrally investigate all 60 newspapers and use every single news report on climate change, due to the multitude of articles that randomly, but unremarkably report on climate change, I ultimately decided to make a selection and solitary use articles that specifically and significantly report on climate change. Starting with the most specific and significant article (assessed according to the sub-subject and the presence of the preceding climate change key words) and working my way towards relatively less specific and significant articles, I ended up with about one message per paper, so 50 articles in total (appendix I).
On those 50 articles I applied a carefully designed discourse analysis, derived from both CDA, as well as CDP.
I have decided to apply a qualitative research method, for a quantitative research method merely measures data, thereby passing by the motives, meanings and processes behind these data. Quantitative research is relatively superficial for
it focuses on what, when and where, whereas qualitative research is relatively penetrating for it focuses on how and why, which is the fundamental thought of this thesis. Subsequently, I have decided to apply this sort of qualitative research, instead of another sort of qualitative research, such as frame analysis. First of all, frames do not easily translate into measurable indicators, and so frame analysis sometimes still makes use of measuring models. Furthermore, frame analysis
often focuses on corresponding pieces of data to perform best, whereas I intend to analyse media discourse, that is newspaper articles, as well as public discourse, that is interviews, which do not correspond at all. Finally, frame analysis often assumes data to belong to either one or the other frame, and often analyses data according to already established masterframes, passing by variability through interaction and interpretation, which once again, is the fundamental thought
of this thesis. By remaining as objective as possible, I have reported as detailed as possible on the discourse on climate change. For each and every single news item I have noted down when climate change is discussed (what date, what day within what context), where climate change is discussed (what paper, which country), what the specific sub-subject within
the subject of climate change is, who speaks (who wrote the article, who is quoted or paraphrased, who is referred to),
which versions of climate change come about and stand out (climate change as a crisis, climate change as a problem,
which will or should be solved or climate change as exasperatingly exaggerated) and how these versions are validated.
Or to be more conscientious, by combining some typical theoretical concepts derived from CDA, such as interdiscursive analysis (which analyses the different genres and discourses that are drawn upon and influence one another) and linguistic and semiotic analysis (which analyses the way a text is structured, the way clauses are linked in complex or compound sentences, the make up of these clauses in particular, and the choice of words), as well as some typical theoretical concepts derived from CDP, such as interpretative repertoires and ideological dilemmas, I developed an entirely original method to analyse the concerning different versions and validations of climate change. Because, although discourse analysis is a qualitative method, although this qualitative method is a matter of sensing, detecting and interpreting prominent patterns
and although sensing, detecting and interpreting prominent patters is subject to subjectivity, to guarantee verifiability and reliability I have set up a statute to analyse the newspaper articles. Above all, I have looked at which verbal repertoires dominate and how they become dominant. What are the traces, the pointers, the evidences of these verbal repertoires?
Turns out these traces can be classified into two categories. One can look at the entire text, which is what I call structure, and one can look at specific words within that text, which is what I call lexicon. And so this classification culminates into the following framework:
Whole text organization: is it a narrative, dialogue, dispute, script, research, interview?
When is something being said: at once or at last?
How often is something being said: randomly or repeatedly?
Mood: does someone declare or does someone ask questions?
Modality: does someone commit to the truth or does someone make truth claims?
Activity, passivity: does someone do something, or does something happen to someone?
Ideological dilemmas: does someone say something as though it is common sense?
Adjectives: does someone use excessive adjectives?
Repetition of terms: does someone repeatedly refer to the same terms or related terms?
Type of terms: doe someone repeatedly refer to technical, economical, psychological terms?
Synonyms, metaphors: does someone use synonyms and metaphors?
Denotation, connotation: does someone suggest something or does someone literally lay out something?
Transitivity: does someone do something to someone or something or does someone just sit, sleep and be?
These are the traces of specific ways of talking about climate change, the indicators of the different views on climate change, the mechanisms that are made use of when validating a verbal repertoire on climate change. Because, when something is being said right away and repeatedly it is a lot more prominent than when something is being said suddenly and randomly. And when someone adopts a secure tone, a declarative mood and convincingly commits to the truth, instead of adopting a defensive tone, asking questions and making truth claims, such as “usually” and “probably”, someone comes across a lot more credible, and so a lot more conclusive. And when someone speaks of someone else, as though it is a passive player, which doesn’t do something, but on which befalls something, the other comes across as vulnerable and inferior, whereas when someone speaks of someone else, as though it is an active player, which does do something, the other comes across as strong and superior. And as far as goes for lexicon, when someone continuously repeats something, linking something to excessive adjectives, specific terms, specific synonyms or specific connotations, something obtains a specific, more or less dominant or determined meaning as well. In short, the aforementioned mechanisms make up if, how and how well a specific verbal repertoire is validated.
Hence, I have analyzed the 50 newspaper articles, applying a carefully designed discourse analysis, derived from both CDA, as well as CDP, sensing, detecting and interpreting prominent patterns, that is, watching which verbal repertoires attract the attention, and according to the aforementioned framework, how these verbal repertoires are validated.
The subsequent sample shows how I dissected the first article from the New York Times.
When? Article 1: March 29, 2009, 1st day of the Bonn Climate Change Talks
Where? The New York Times, US
What? Climate change as a subject of controversy: Andrew C. Revkin puts apart the dispute over ‘tipping points’ among climate scientists, with on the one side (climate change as a problem, with disastrous consequences) NASA climate scientist James E. Hansen, who says “the climate is nearing tipping points”, and on the other side (climate change as an overstatement) the earth scientists Kenneth Caldeira of Stanford University, John S. Wettlaufer of Yale and Ian Eisenman of the CIT who say that “there is little hard evidence to back up specific predictions of catastrophe”, that “a lot of this threshold and tipping point talk is dangerous” and that it is important to be “caustically honest about what we know and don’t know”.
How? The overall, typical structure of the text emphasizes the idea of a debate, with Hansen and the other scientists speaking on alternating turns. The author of the text underlines the controversy within climate science, by using words such as “wedge”, but also more subtle, invalidating words, such as “but”, “while”, “nevertheless” and “on the other hand”. Besides, the author bears out doubt, by using words such as “enormous uncertainty” and “no one knows”.
What? Climate change as a problem, with disastrous consequences.
How? Hansen constructs his view on the “dangerous, disastrous human-warmed climate”, by pointing out the possible, by now kind of obvious and familiar sounding natural consequences of climate change, and connecting these to exaggerated adjectives such as “widespread”, “overwhelming”, “immediacy”, “menace”, “threats” and “collapse”. Moreover, by using the metaphor “tipping points” he implies a threshold in which change suddenly becomes unstoppable, which is an effort to stir public concern. The ideological dilemma “If we do not change course, we’ll hand our children a situation that is out of their control” intensifies this, meaning we should take into account the next generation, instead of being selfish. Hansen also speaks in an active, alarming manner.
What? Climate change as an overstatement.
How? Hansen speaks in an alarming, active manner, whereas the other scientists speak in a worried way, trying to neutralize strong statements, such as the one on the tipping point. By making invalidating assaults, with words such as “misleading”, “backfire”, “fueling criticism of alarmism” and “threatening public support”, they actually aim their argument in the exact same direction as Hansen does, that is, the people as the key to solve climate change. However, the ideological dilemma “If we say we passed thresholds and tipping points today, this will be an excuse for inaction tomorrow” warns scientists not to overreact, or no one will act.
I dissected the other 49 newspaper articles the exact same way, keeping a detailed record of my findings and, in the end, drawing conclusions for each country and comparing these to one another, as well as to the country’s public discourse, which will contribute to the solution of the overall research question of this thesis.
3.2 Public Discourse Analysis applied to Climate Change Controversy
What? University Students’ Discourse
Why? I am analysing public discourse on climate change. However, the entire ‘public’ is way too broad a field of research,
so I have narrowed it down to one specific part of the public, that is, university students. First of all, university students tend to be young and smart. Therefore they’re often well informed on current affairs, such as climate change, and educated in forming founded, reasoned opinions on these matters (especially climate change, for they are the people of the future and so they will have to live with it). Besides, university students tend to be trained in being critical towards everyone and everything, such as opinion influencing mechanisms, such as the media, and so such as newspapers. Second, university students are also very researchable, for I am a university student myself and so I’m literally surrounded by other university students.
Being one of them, it is relatively easy for me to get in touch with them and get them to talk to me, in a willing, participating, enthusiastic, but open, honest and critical way. Because, as I mentioned before, they are trained to do so. And last but not least, university students match my chosen newspapers perfectly, for The Times and De Volkskrant’s focus is on a relatively high educated, elite audience.
Where? Berkeley University California & Erasmus University Rotterdam
Why? Both Berkeley and Erasmus are prominent, respectable universities with a high standard of education. However,
they are not as uptight and conservative as some other universities typically tend to be, but both known for their social, no nonsense attitude. So surely its students have an opinion on environmental issues. Especially considering Rotterdam’s and San Francisco’s share in solving climate change (think of Rotterdam Climate Initiative and San Francisco’s typical protests and idealistic action plans to save the planet), due to these cities’ sincere, and also necessary concern for climate change. Furthermore, both Berkeley and Erasmus have significant, outstanding journalistic departments, with students specialized in media, which comes in quite convenient when conducting an interview on this particular topic.
In brief, Berkeley and Erasmus are a lot alike and therefore very comparable. And lost but not least, Berkeley and Erasmus are relatively easily accessible, for I am an Erasmus student and I will be visiting Berkeley shortly.
When? March 2009
Why? Actually, the date doesn’t really matter, for whether it’s now or in a few months, people will always have an opinion on a hot topic, such as climate change. But because the timeframe of my media discourse analysis is the month of March,
I have conducted my public discourse analysis in the month of March as well.
How? For both Berkeley and Erasmus I have selected a focus group of university students, with which I have held a group discussion on climate change, by using a semi-structured interview schedule (appendix II), upon which I have applied the exact same carefully designed discourse analysis, derived from both CDA, as well as CDP. For this type of analysis I am interested in interpretative repertoires and ideological dilemmas, which can only flourish in the first place through interaction and interpretation. When conducting research analyses through interviews, most interviewers want to hear one specific answer, and so they treat variability from one participant to another and variability among the responses of particular individuals as distortion or technical difficulties. I, on the other hand, am actually interested in this variability, instead of one specific answer, or for that matter, answers on their own at all. And so the focus of my analysis is not on what is being said, but on how it is being said. There are no right or wrong answers. On the contrary. It’s about the variability within discourse and the way it comes to existence within specific contexts. At which point, which arguments are brought to which table?
Therefore I held a group discussion, for I hoped that through the interaction with each other (instead of the limited interaction with one single interviewer or no interaction at all) the students would keep coming up with different interpretative repertoires and ideological dilemmas, in short different ways of talking, instead of specific answers. Therefore the focus group had to exist of several students, preferably five or ten, and preferably with a journalistic, media oriented or climate oriented background, such as a journalism, media or sustainability, to increase my chances of collecting interesting data,
due to interesting discourse. The students need not to be experts on the topic of climate change, because neither am I. However, it is quite convenient if they know something, or anything, about climate change and the way the media report on it.
And so I have sent a request to Dean Henry, a couple of lectures and other faculty members of Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism (request I, appendix III) and the presidents of some Berkeley University student organizations involved with the environment (request II, appendix III), explaining I am writing a thesis on the US and Dutch media discourse and public discourse on the climate change controversy, and how, when, where and why I would like to involve Berkeley in my thesis.
Ultimately only one student (organization) replied to my request:
As a signatory and fellow founding member for Global Public Health Brigades, I would be happy to assist you on your master thesis on media discourse about climate change. Although we do not have any upcoming meetings, I can gather some of my friends who are also founding members to have an informal discussion about the topics you are interested in. I went to the Netherlands two summers before and I personally am very interested in Dutch media and public texts on a range of issues such as race/religion, the current economic recession, legalized prostitution and of course climate change.
I am free at the dates you have listed, and will contact my friends to see if they can meet up. I look forward to an interesting discussion.
George K. Jiang
University of California, Berkeley (Class of 2010)
B.S. Business Administration, B.A. Economics
949.395.8868 | email@example.com And so for Berkeley I finally decided the members of the Global Public Health Brigades would make a very fine focus group, for they are a group in the first place, consisting of more than just one student and on top of that, they are obviously environmentally engaged, thus they will know a thing or two about climate change and probably provide some very interesting discourse, and so some very interesting data for this thesis. I held my Berkeley group discussion on Monday March the 30th 2009, in Berkeley, California, underneath a big oak tree on the grass hill in front of the International House at the south side of Berkeley University, with George K. Jiang, Sam Jackson and Paul Davies (Appendix IV).
For Erasmus it was a lot easier to select a focus group. I have sent the same sort of request (however translated and adjusted to Dutch standards) to Professor Rotmans, who is a professor at Erasmus University and the scientific director of the Dutch Research Institute For Transitions (request III, appendix III), and contacted the presidents of some Erasmus University student organizations involved with the environment (request IV, appendix III).
Ultimately only Jan Rotmans responded to my request:
Dank voor je leuke email! Wil daar best een keer met je over praten, probleem is natuurlijk mijn drukke agenda, zal toch proberen of er niet een half uurtje vrij te maken valt de komende twee weken. Ik laat het je snel weten. Hartelijke groet, Jan Rotmans However, after writing him several e-mails (one of which telling him that I myself would be rather busy the next few weeks as well, for I had to do an interview at Berkeley University), he never got back to me again.
And so for Erasmus I finally contacted Girls Gone Green, an environmentally active student organization, which I discovered through the RSC, which is the oldest, largest and most versatile student organization in Rotterdam. I decided the members of Girls Gone Green would make a very fine focus group, for they are a group in the first place, consisting of more than just one student, they are obviously environmentally engaged, thus they will know a thing or two about climate change and probably provide some very interesting discourse, and so some very interesting data for this thesis, and on top of that, the Girls Gone Green speak English, for they are solely students studying International Business Administration, which is an English bachelor at the Erasmus University.
I held my Erasmus group discussion on Wednesday March the 25th 2009, in Rotterdam, over drinks and diner in a old student house somewhere in charming and cosy Kralingen, with Naomi Boortman, Bianca Knotter and Melanie Wijnolst (Appendix V).
I conducted both the Berkeley group discussion and the Erasmus group discussion in the exact same way (staying in the background, remaining neutral, however inviting interaction, bringing on variability in discourse) according to the exact same semi-structured interview schedule (except for a few minor changes in the manner of approaching and addressing).
On those two interviews I applied the same carefully designed discourse analysis, derived from both CDA and CDP.
By remaining as objective as possible, I have reported as detailed as possible on the discourse on climate change. For each interview I have noted down when climate change is discussed (what date, what day within what context), where climate change is discussed (what university, which country), what the specific sub-subject within the subject of climate change is, who speaks (who is talking, who is quoted or paraphrased, who is referred to), which versions of climate change come about and stand out (climate change as a crisis, climate change as a problem, which will or should be solved or climate change as exasperatingly exaggerated) and how these versions are validated.
Or to be more conscientious, I have analyzed the interviews according to the exact same, entirely original method,
which combines some typical theoretical concepts derived from CDA, such as structure and lexicon, as well as some
typical theoretical concepts derived from CDP, such as interpretative repertoires and ideological dilemmas, and so sensing, detecting and interpreting prominent patterns concerning climate change, that is, watching which verbal repertoires attract the attention, and according to the foregoing framework of structure and lexicon, how these verbal repertoires are validated.
The subsequent sample shows how I dissected part of the Berkeley University interview.
When? March 30, 2009, 2nd day of the Bonn Climate Change Talks
Where? Berkeley University, California, US
What? Climate change is a subject of controversy.
How? The overall, typical structure of the text emphasizes the idea of a debate, with George, Sam and Paul speaking on alternating turns. The respondents underline the controversy of climate change, by using phrases such as “it’s really debatable”, “it’s kind of difficult to create your own opinion, because there is so much going on with what everyone is telling you”, “you read it’s gonna be hot, and then you read that maybe this warm gulf stream that is causing climate change is going to change, so no, it’s getting cooler again” and “you really have to put your mind to it, to come to the right conclusions”, by emphasizing that their opinions are based on a controversial subject, through terms such as “for me”, “I think”, “in my view”, “in my opinion” and “personally”, by pointing out contradictory parties through phrases such as “everyone in the world”, “a lot of people are now concerned” and “a lot of people argue against this”, but also by using more subtle, invalidating phrases, such as “but”, “while” and “nevertheless”.
I dissected the rest of the two interviews the exact same way, keeping a detailed record of my findings and, in the end, drawing conclusions for each country and comparing these to one another, as well as to the country’s media discourse, which will contribute to the solution of the overall research question of this thesis.
4.1 US Media Discourse on Climate Change: The New York Times
4.2 US Public Discourse on Climate Change: Berkeley University
4.3 Influenced Influence: US Media Discourse compared to US Public Discourse
4.4 Dutch Media Discourse on Climate Change: De Volkskrant
4.5 Dutch Public Discourse on Climate Change: Erasmus University
4.6 Influenced Influence: Dutch Media Discourse compared to Dutch Public Discourse
4.7 US Discourse on Climate Change compared to Dutch Discourse on Climate Change
On both the US and Dutch media discourse, that is 50 articles from respectively The New York Times and De Volkskrant,
as well as on the US and Dutch public discourse, that is two interviews with respectively Berkeley University students and Erasmus University students, I applied the same carefully designed discourse analysis, derived from CDA and CDP.
By remaining as objective as possible, I hereby report as detailed as possible on what I sensed, detected and interpreted
to be prominent patterns concerning climate change, that is, the views and how structure and lexicon validate these views. One of those prominent patterns is that the verbal repertoires on climate change can be divided into definition, causes, effects and solutions. And so, due to this remarkable regularity and moreover, the surveyability of this chapter, I will hold on to this division. I will first report on the media discourse within the US, that is, the New York Times articles (4.1). Then I will report on the public discourse within the US, that is, the Berkeley University interview (4.2), after which I will compare the influenced influence of the US media discourse and the US public discourse (4.3). Subsequently, I will report on the media discourse within the Netherlands, that is, the Volkskrant articles (4.4). Then I will report on the public discourse within the Netherlands, that is, the Erasmus University interview (4.5), after which I will compare the influenced influence of the Dutch media discourse and the Dutch public discourse (4.6). Finally, I will compare the combined US media discourse and public discourse with the combined Dutch media discourse and public discourse (4.7). The following framework completely clarifies the composition of this chapter: