Publication details [#60963]

Demir, Yeliz. 2016. Maneuvering strategically in a press conference to diminish political responsibility for a critical event. The case of the soma mine disaster. Journal of Argumentation in Context 5 (2) : 191–217.
Publication type
Article in journal
Publication language
Place, Publisher
John Benjamins
Journal DOI


It is an essential requirement of democracy that politicians provide account of their words and actions to the public. However, being able to account is especially important when a politician or the party he/she is representing is assumed responsible for a critical event that has undesirable consequences for the public. Under such a condition, political press conferences serve as an instrument for a politician to justify the position of the government by means of argumentation. By adopting the pragma-dialectical framework, this paper sets out to explain how a politician maneuvers strategically in a press conference for the purpose of diminishing political responsibility when his party which is in charge of the government, is assumed responsible for a critical event. The paper draws its data from the political press conference held by Erdoğan, a former Prime Minister of Turkey, following the mine accident that took place in Soma, Turkey, in 2014.