Publication details [#12571]

Gieroń-Czepczor, Ewa. 2014. Verbal welfare in the Polish media: an analysis of conceptual metaphors in political discourse. Research in Language 11 (2) : 213–238. 26 pp.
Publication type
Article in journal
Publication language
Place, Publisher
De Gruyter Open


In the 1990s, cognitive semanticists, like George Lakoff and the Rockridge Institute, became involved in the analysis of political discourse. After con-sidering the use of metaphorical language by the US leaders Bush and Obama, particularly at the War on Terror period, a number of conceptual metaphors has been discovered, namely THE STATE AS A PERSON, THE STATE AS THE FAMILY, THE USA AS A MORAL LEADER/DEFENDER OF THE JUST CAUSE, WAR AS MEDICINE, ARGUMENT IS WAR. By contrast, internal matters and debates are clearly highlighted in the political discourse used in Poland. As a result, a dominant simplistic and dualistic representation of the country is depicted, as shown in the statements made officially or unofficially by the Polish government and parliamentarians. But the most important thing is that the set of features of politics causes the descrip-tion of war made on all other parties involved. This paper accurately describes conceptual metaphors through a large collection of material. We mainly rely on interviews with politicians and texts where journalists deal with the Polish political context and the most recent progress. Also, we make use of daily news and services of chosen Polish everyday newspapers and magazines found on the Internet. Our material ranges in time from September 2011 to mid-January 2012. The results obtained after analysing our spoken and written data show that political, social, and economic hostilities are underlined through the language used, given that it emphasizes dichotomies and portrays ‘the others’ as the origin of evil. Lakoff’s research is the base for understanding the metaphorical language under study, as a large amount of this evokes the ARGUMENT IS WAR metaphor. Furthermore, the collected data suggest that a lot of ‘wars’ are taking place and creating language related to conflict.