Russia as the other
Corpus investigation of Olympic host construction in The New York Times
This paper explores the construction of Russia as the Other in a major Western media source. For its theoretical framework, it draws on Stuart Hall’s conception of the representation of the Other through splitting. The study is based on the comparative analysis of the portrayal of Russia and the UK as host nations for two different Olympic Games in The New York Times. In order to reduce researcher bias, the analysis is conducted using methods of corpus linguistics. Two specialized corpora were compiled: one on the run-up to the 2014 Sochi Olympics and the other to the 2012 London Olympics. Three topics of the typical pre-Olympic discourse are compared: security, construction, and protests. It is observed that these aspects are constructed in binary opposition in the coverage of the two Games, presenting Russia as the West’s constituting Other. The issue of the negative implications of such discourse is raised.
Keywords: Russia, discursive othering, Olympics, West and Rest, corpus, binary opposition
Published online: 20 October 2016
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Cited by 2 other publications
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