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Critical Discourse Analysis

by Diako Hamzehzadeh Afkham

CHAPTER ONE
INTRODUCTION
1.1 Introduction
Critical discourse analysis (CDA), a recent school of discourse
analysis, is an interdisciplinary approach to the study of discourse, which
views "language as a form of social practice" (Fairclough, 1989, p. 20) and
focuses on the ways social and political domination is reproduced by text
and talk. That is, language is both socially constitutive as well as "socially
shaped" (Fairclough and Wodak, 1997, p. 258).
Critical linguistics has been an approach to the analysis of discourse
for the last thirty years, and as one of its central objectives, it considers the
linguistic choices a text producer makes as a potential medium through
which the ideological import of a particular discourse situation can be
reproduced. Fairclough and Wodak (1997) usefully translate this into the
"working assumption" that "any part of any language text, spoken or
written, is simultaneously constituting representations, relations, and
identities" (p. 275). That is, discourse represents particular world views,
particular social relations between people, and particular social identities
according to the purpose, context and addressees of the text.
CDA attempts to unpack the hidden ideologies of discourse that have
become so naturalized over time and are perceived as acceptable and
natural features of discourse. In terms of method, CDA can generally be
described as hyper-linguistic or supra-linguistic, in that practitioners who
use CDA consider the larger discourse context or the meaning that lies
beyond the grammatical structure. This includes consideration of the
political, and even the economic, context of language usage and production.

In addition, the approach draws from social theory and


contributions from Marx, Gramsci, Althusser, Habermas, Foucault and
Bourdieu in order to examine ideologies and power relations involved in
discourse. Amongst the most influential scholars is the French poststructuralist philosopher, Foucault (Fairclough 1989). Another influential
school of thought that has been an important source for CDA is the Marxistinfluenced Critical Theory of the Frankfurt School, in particular that of
Adorno and Horkheimer, later followed by Habermas (Fairclough 1989;
Fowler et al. 1979; Wodak 2001). Quoting Habermas (1977, p. 259), Wodak
(2001, p. 2) asserts that:
Most critical discourse analysts would endorse Habermas's claim
that 'language is also a medium of domination and social force. It
serves to legitimize relations of organized power. In so far as the
legitimations of power relations are not articulated
language is also ideological'.
Fairclough notes "that language connects with the social through
being the primary domain of ideology, and through being both a site of, and
a stake in, struggles for power" (1989, p. 15).
Critical discourse analysis is founded on the idea that there is
unequal access to linguistic and social resources, resources that are
controlled institutionally. The pattern of access to discourse and
communicative events is an essential element for CDA. In other words,
CDA aims at investigating critically social inequality "as it is expressed,
signaled, constituted, legitimized and so on by language use" (Wodak,
2001, p. 2).
The language employed in EFL textbooks is not an exception to this
rule. Textbooks as other types of discourse can be ideologically loaded
although they may seem innocent at first sight. Tadeu da Silva (1999, p.1)
maintains that a curriculum "is always [an] authorized representation",

implicitly, legitimating and disseminating a certain ideology. Kress (1996,


p.16) contends that:
The curriculum and its associated pedagogy, puts forward a set
of cultural, linguistic and social resources which students have
available as recourses for their own transformation, in relation to
which (among others) students constantly construct, reconstruct
and transform their subjectivity .
On the influence of language on society, Lakoff (1973) argued that
society is reflected in the language, with the values and assumptions held by
society being mirrored in the language. His studies were concerned with the
manner in which women were depicted in written and spoken English and
what values were being unconsciously passed on because of this. The norms
of conduct, ideology, etc. are usually disseminated without the learner even
being aware of being exposed to such norms. That is, (s)he is exposed to a
"hidden curriculum", to use Skelton (1997) terms. The liberal perspective,
according to Skelton (1997),
considers the hidden curriculum to be those taken for granted
assumptions and practices of school life which although being
created by various 'actors' within the school take on an
appearance of accepted normality through their daily production
and reproduction. (p.179)
Evans and Davis (2000) assert that though researchers and publishers
have agreed upon using positive characteristics of different genders in their
textbooks, the achievements have not been so significant. Studies of the
portrayal of women in EFL/ESL textbooks (Ansary and Babii 2003;
Hartman and Judd 1978) have shown that the stereotypical role of women
as mothers and homemakers is still being perpetuated in many current
language textbooks. Otlowski (2003) in this regard, criticizes EFL/ESL
textbooks for contributing to the misinterpretation of women and minority
groups and considers it as unacceptable in this day and age to perpetuate the

image of women as homemakers when women make up such an integral


part of the workforce in both the United States and the United Kingdom.

1.2. Statement of the Problem


Experts in the field of CDA (Fairclough, 1995; van Dijk, 1998, 2001;
van Leeuwen, 1996, to name a few) assert that language employed in
books, media, or even in an ordinary conversation does not simply convey
the information that it overtly indicates. Rather, it can be used to shape the
addressees feelings, thoughts and modes of behavior. Such potentials are
sound enough to make language a suitable medium for uncovering hidden
ideologies intended to construct social norms and values. According to
Kress (1996, p.16)
A curriculum is a design for a future social subject and via that
envisioned subject a design for a future society. That is, the
curriculum puts forward knowledges, skills, meanings, value in
the present which will be telling in the lives of those who
experience the curriculum, ten or twenty years later. Forms of
pedagogy experienced by children now in school suggest to them
forms of social relation which they are encouraged to adopt,
adapt, modify and treat as models.
If the influential role of textbooks on learners' mentality is accepted,
then the way textbooks portray the various people in the target society and
the way those people are shown to communicate will directly affect EFL
students' worldview.
Considering the possible effects of textbooks on constructing
learners views and ideologies, this study aims at investigating the possible
inclusion and exclusion of such ideologies. That is to say, this study is to
identify the principal ways through which social actors are represented in
the texts under study and reveal the possible hidden discursive structures.

1.3. Objectives of the study


This study is an endeavor to clarify the way male and female social
actors are represented in the Interchange Third Edition (2005). The study
draws on the work of van Leeuwen (1996) to formulate a framework which
utilizes a socio-semantic inventory, in a systematic way. The study will be
carried out to:
1.

Identify the particular ways in which social actors have

been represented in the textbooks under study.


2.

Determine the magnitude of the application of social

actors and ideologies involved.


3.

Identify the particular ideologies at work.

Interchange Third Edition series would serve as the data for the
study since these textbooks are widely used as EFL/ESL sources and they
are accessible productions to which students are mostly exposed. Moreover,
the texts seem amenable to critical analysis based on the features introduced
in van Leeuwen (1996) socio-semantic framework.

1.4. Research Questions


To further clarify the points under investigation the following three
research questions are formulated:
1. Are social actors represented differently in the textbooks under
study and, if so, how is this achieved linguistically?
2. Provided that social actors are represented differently, what
ideological assumptions can account for the difference?
3. Are particular words or expressions used to represent the
ideologies at work?

1.5. Significance of the Study

Critical linguistics has been widely influential and successful in


documenting the connection of linguistic and social practices. Language is
not merely a means of communicating information. Rather, it is an
important means of establishing and maintaining social relationship with
other members of the speech community. It has the potential to provide a
detailed theoretical account of the operation of ideology in all aspects of
texts (see e.g., Fairclough, 1989, 1995; Hodge & Kress, 1996).
One such aspect is ideological uses of language in textbooks. Of
course, language (usage) is essentially a neutral vehicle of communication
which can be used to convey a range of attitudes and values. However,
language (use) plays a major role in strengthening certain attitudes and
values which, it seems, is less widely understood and acknowledged.
According to Foucault (1980), socialization systems, especially the
educational system, constitute a link between knowledge and ideology.
Ideology is aided by education for purposes of survival, continuity and
immortalization of certain values.
Textbooks contain the ideological consensus which allows them to
become accepted and desirable in the education system. Because these texts
are written and edited by educated, scientific people, one can assume that
the authors insist on the reliability of the information presented in the
books. However, one can assume that their writing is also affected by the
acceptance of the ideological conventions under whose influence they
acted. The authors of the textbooks are not always aware of the ideological
influence which directed their writing, and this influence may be
unconscious.
CDA attempts to reveal hidden ideologies in discourse which play a
crucial role in shaping peoples ideologies as well as changing social
realities. In this regard, van Dijk (1985, p. 7) states:

Discourse plays a crucial role in their ideological formation, in


their communicative reproduction, in the social and political
decision procedures and in the institutional management and
representation of such issues as soon as we know more about
the discursive representation and management of such problems
and conflicts, we have the design for the key that disrupt,
disclose and challenge the mechanism involved.
Armstrong (1998) views the basic function of a curriculum as the
dissemination, as well as the imposition, of power relation in a community.
Hence, being aware of such hidden notions in the texts will obviously
provide learners with options to choose.
Considering the potential ideologies textbooks can impose on L2 learners
and the spreading use of the Interchange series in language institutes, a
critical analysis of these books to denaturalize or uncover certain taken-forgranted assumptions underlying the texts can be of paramount importance.
According to Fowler (1996, p.6) the results of such studies may hopefully
"equip readers for demystificatory reading of ideology-laden texts". This
could arm the reader with the ability to become a critical reader and to
develop the language awareness, serving as a "prerequisite for effective,
and a democratic entitlement", as indicated by Fairclough (1995, p. 222).
The findings of this study clearly will be helpful to English teachers as well
as L2 learners, in that, the application of critical discourse analysis to
instructional material can give them additional skills in identifying
discursive strategies expressing social values and ideological underpinnings
of the text and provide them with a deeper knowledge and understanding of
the social and ideological aspects of the society in which the language is
used.

CHAPTER TWO
LITERATURE REVIEW
2.1. Introduction
CDA has dealt with many social and linguistic issues in research
such as language and ideology, linguistic imperialism, the relationship
between gender, power and identity. According to Meyer (2001, p.15),
"CDA scholars play an advocatory role for groups who suffer form social
discrimination". It is argued here that CDA can be useful in openly and
explicitly examining the relationship between politics and research.
Some of the tenets of critical discourse analysis can already be found
in the Critical Theory of the Frankfurt School before the Second World War
(Rasmussen, 1996). Its current focus on language and discourse was
initiated with the critical linguistics that emerged (mostly in the UK and
Australia) at the end of the 1970s (Fowler et al. 1979; Mey, 1985).
Fairclough & Wodak (1997, p. 271-280) 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 explanatory.
8. Discourse is a form of social action.
Wodak (1989) defines the field, which she calls critical linguistics, as
an interdisciplinary approach to language study with a critical point of view
for the purpose of studying language behavior in natural speech situations
of social relevance. Wodak also stresses the importance of diverse

theoretical and methodological concepts and suggests that these can also be
used for analyzing issues of social relevance, while attempting to expose
inequality and injustice. Wodak encourages the use of multiple methods in
language research while emphasizing the importance of recognizing the
historical and social aspects.
As Kress (1990) points out, CDA has an overtly political agenda,
which serves to set CDA off from other kinds of discourse analysis and text
linguistics, as well as pragmatics and sociolinguistics. While most forms of
discourse analysis aim to provide a better understanding of socio-cultural
aspects of texts, CDA aims to provide accounts of the production, internal
structure, and overall organization of texts. One crucial difference is that
CDA aims to provide a critical dimension in its theoretical and descriptive
accounts of texts.
Fairclough contends that language contributes to the domination of
some people by others, and that a more critical analysis of the ideological
workings of language is "the first step towards emancipation" (1989, p. 1).

2.2. Critical Theory


Critical Theory has a narrow and a broad meaning in philosophy and
in the history of the social sciences. Critical Theory in the narrow sense
designates several generations of German philosophers and social theorists
in the Western European Marxist tradition known as the Frankfurt School.
According to these theorists, a critical theory may be distinguished from a
traditional theory according to a specific practical purpose: a theory is
critical to the extent that it seeks human emancipation, to liberate human
beings from the circumstances that enslave them (Horkheimer 1982, p.
244). Because such theories aim to explain and transform all the
circumstances that enslave human beings, many critical theories in the
broader sense have been developed. They have emerged in connection with
the many social movements that identify varied dimensions of the

domination of human beings in modern societies. In both the broad and the
narrow senses, however, a critical theory provides the descriptive and
normative bases for social inquiry aimed at decreasing domination and
increasing freedom in all their forms.

2.3. Development of CDA


Critical linguistics was first introduced in Language and Control by
Fowler, Hodge, Kress, and Trew (Crystal, 1987). It was a reaction to fill the
explanatory shortages of then current analyses. This approach was to go
deeper into the interpretation of discourse and try to realize and establish
the relations of discourse and the social entities outside the discourse.
Kress (1990) gives an account of the theoretical foundations and
sources of critical linguistics (CL). He indicates that the term CL was "quite
self-consciously adapted" (p. 88), as a label by a group of scholars working
at the University of East Anglia in the 1970s.
By the 1990s, the label CDA came to be used more consistently with
this particular approach to linguistic analysis. Kress (1990, p. 94) shows
how CDA by that time was emerging as a distinct theory of language, a
radically different kind of linguistics. He lists criteria that characterize
work in the critical discourse analysis paradigm, illustrating how these
distinguish such work from other politically engaged discourse analysis.
Of course, the start of this CDA network is also marked by the
launch of van Dijks journal Discourse and society (1990) as well as
through several books, like Language and Power by Fairclough (1989),
Language, Power and Ideology by Wodak (1989) or van Dijks first book
on racism, Prejudice in Discourse (1984). According to Wodak (2001), the
Amsterdam meeting marked an institutional beginning.
Since then, much has changed the agenda as well as the scholars
involved. New journals have been launched, multiple overviews have been

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written, and nowadays CDA is an "established paradigm in linguistics".


(Wodak, 2001, p. 4)

2.3.1. Ideology
The term ideology may be considered as one of the less settled
categories in the field of linguistic studies. Concise Oxford Dictionary
(1994, p.477) defines ideology as "a system of ideas and ideals forming the
basis of an economic or political theory; the set of beliefs characteristic of a
social group or individual."
However, its everyday usage is largely negative, and "typically refers
to the rigid, misguided or partisan ideas of others: we have the truth, and
they have ideologies" (van Dijk 2004, Ideology, para.1). This negative
meaning goes back to Marx-Engels, for whom ideologies were a form of
false consciousnesses. Originally, ideology did not have this negative
meaning. More than two hundred years ago, the French philosopher Destutt
de Tracy introduced the term in order to denote a new discipline that would
study ideas: idologie. Also in the contemporary political science, the
notion is used in a more neutral, descriptive sense, e.g., to refer to political
belief systems (Freeden, 1996).
One of the many dimensions highlighted in the classical approaches
to ideology was its dominant nature, in the sense that ideologies play a role
in the legitimization of power abuse by dominant groups. One of the most
efficient forms of ideological dominance is when the dominated groups also
accept dominant ideologies as natural or commonsense. Gramsci called
such forms of ideological dominance hegemony (Gramsci, 1971). Bourdieu
does not use the notion of ideology very much (mainly because he thinks it
is too vague and has often been abused to discredit others who do not agree
with us (see Bourdieu & Eagleton, 1994), but rather speaks of symbolic
power or symbolic violence. It should be stressed, though, that his uses of
these terms are different from the (various) uses of the notion of ideology.

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His main interest lies in the social conditions of discursive and symbolic
power, such as the authority and legitimacy of those who produce
discourse.
Van Dijk (2004, Ideology, para. 4) defines ideology as "the
foundation of the social representations shared by a social group". He
contends these group ideas may be valued "positively", "negatively" or not
be valued at all depending on ones perspective, group membership or
ethics. That is, ideologies are not exclusively identified with dominant
groups in the sense that dominated groups may also have ideologies,
namely ideologies of "resistance" and "opposition". More generally
ideologies are associated with social groups, classes, casts or communities
which thus represent their fundamental interests. He further points out
Ideologies are the axiomatic basis of the social representations
of a group and through specific social attitudes and then
through personal mental models -- control the individual
discourses and other social practices of group members.
(Ideology, para. 5)
In contrast with many Marxist or other critics who interpret the
role of the media in modern societies deterministically, van Dijk
(2004) does not suggest that ideologies are essentially false forms of
consciousness, as in the case of many traditional theories of ideology.
The possible discrepancy between group ideology and group
interests implies that power relations in society can also be reproduced
and legitimated at the ideological level, meaning that, to control other
people, it is most effective to try to control their group attitudes and
especially their even more fundamental, attitude-producing,
ideologies. In such circumstances, audiences will behave out of their
own free will in accordance with the interests of the powerful. Van
Dijk, in line with other proponents of CDA including Wodak and
Kress, implies that the exercise of power in modern, democratic

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societies is no longer primarily coercive, but persuasive, that is,


ideological.
Language, according to Fairclough (1995, p. 73), is a material form
of ideology, invested by ideology. Ideology is not a concept that
belongs to the realm of ideas but it has a material existence in language.
This is also recognized by Fairclough (1992, p. 87) who defines ideologies
as:
significations/constructions of reality which are built into various
dimensions of the forms/meanings of discursive practices and
which contribute to the production, reproduction or
transformation of relations of domination.
Ideologies become most effective when they become naturalized or
are perceived as common sense. Therefore, language, being ideologically
invested (although to varying degrees), helps maintain or transform power
relations within a specific socio-economic context.
Van Dijk (1995, p. 22) holds that ideologies are implicitly expressed
in text and talk and "discourses function to persuasively help construct new
and confirm already present ideologies".
Seliger defines ideology as "an action-oriented set of beliefs" (1976,
p.107), in the same way Hodge and Kress (1996, p.6) define it as "a
systematic body of ideas, organized from a particular point of view ".

2.3.2. Power
Much of the recent sociological debate on power revolves around the
issue of the constraining and/or enabling nature of power. Thus, power can
be seen as various forms of constraint on human action, but also as that
which makes action possible, although in a limited scope. Much of this
debate is related to the works of the French philosopher Foucault, who,
following the Italian political philosopher Machiavelli, sees power as "a

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complex strategic situation in a given society" (Wikipedia). Being deeply


structural, his concept involves both constraint and enablement.
One of the crucial tasks of CDA is to account for the relationships
between discourse and social power. More specifically, such an analysis
should describe and explain how power abuse is enacted, reproduced or
legitimised by the text and talk of the dominant groups or institutions.
Power may be exercised in covert or/and overt ways. The proponents
of CDA (Fairclough, 1995; Hodge and Kress, 1996, and van Dijk 2001)
maintain that discourse is the site where power relations are constructed,
practiced and reconstructed. They tend to believe that this power relation
therefore is not natural, but is a socially constructed notion, and that
language is the most important tool in accomplishing the power relationship
existing among members of a community and, as Fowler (1985, p. 61)
asserts, "the use of language continuously constitutes the statuses and roles
upon which people base their claims to exercise power, and the statuses and
roles which seem to require subservience."
Van Dijk (1996, p.84) defines power as "a property of relations
between social groups, institutions or organizations". According to him
dominance is "understood as a form of social power abuse, that is, as a
legally or morally illegitimate exercise of control over others in one's own
interest, often resulting in social inequality".
The concept of ideology is most generally associated with power
relations; Power is not a unitary force or phenomenon, nor an exclusively
political phenomenon. Power and power relations are woven throughout all
our practices and ideas. Power is exercised in every relationship, group, and
social practice. According to Thompson (cited in Fairclough, 1992),
ideology is meaning in the service of power.
According to Fairclough (1992), critical discourse analysis is the sort
of analysis that is targeted to unveil linkages of causality and determination
between discursive practices and events and wider social and cultural

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processes and structures, and to investigate how such practices are shaped
ideologically by relations of power and struggles over power and the
maintenance of hegemony.
In discourse, the speakers/writers usually have a myriad of options
by their language, depending upon their purpose, to express the same notion
differently. Concerning the ways such relations may be exercised, Kress
(1985, p. 28) says:
in discourse of power and authority, social agency will be
assigned in particular ways, and this will be expressed through
particular transitivity forms; or specific modal forms will
systematically express relations of power. In this way a given
discourse, say sexist discourse, will display certain quite
characteristic linguistic features, expressive of causality or
agency, power, gender as well as linguistic features serving to
focalize or topicalize specific aspects of discourse.
Kress's words imply that discourse is a social phenomenon, reflecting,
and/or constructing the social structure of the society. Accordingly, linguists
tend to look at and study language critically to uncover the discursive
sources of the class and gender inequality, among others.

2.4. CDA and its Main Trends


2.4.1. van Dijk's Approach
The basic conceptual and theoretical concepts worked out and used
by van Dijk (2002) in his CDA studies are as follows: macro vs.
micro level analysis, power as control, access and discourse
control, context control, the control of text and talk and mind
control. The micro level comprises language, discourse, verbal
interaction and so on while the macro level has to do with power
relation such as inequality and dominance.

15

The multidisciplinary approach van Dijk introduces not only


emphasizes the social and political nature of ideologies, but also their sociocognitive nature (van Dijk 1995). It is articulated within a conceptual
triangle that connects society, discourse and social cognition in the
framework of a critical discourse analysis. In this approach, ideologies are
the basic frameworks for organizing the social cognitions shared by
members of social groups, organizations or institutions. In this respect,
ideologies are both cognitive and social. ideologies essentially function as
the interface between the cognitive representations and processes
underlying discourse and action, on the one hand, and the societal position
and interests of social groups, on the other hand. He states that,
This conception of ideology also allows us to establish the
crucial link between macro-level analyses of groups, social
formations and social structure, and micro-level studies of
situated, individual interaction and discourse. (p. 18)
This approach does imply that a theory of ideology without an
explicit cognitive component is incomplete in that dealing with ideologies
without talking about the nature and functions of socially shared ideas is
theoretically unsatisfactory. According to van Dijk (2004) ideological social
practices are by definition based on ideologies defined as shared mental
representations of some kind, in a way that might be compared with the
way language use is based on a shared grammar or discourse and
conversation rules. It is in this sense that ideologies as socially shared
cognitive resources are fundamental for social practices, interaction and
intra- and inter group relations.
Van Dijk's (2002) focus is also on content from an interdisciplinary
point of view. Discourse analysis, when used together with a
multidisciplinary approach to the study of language, provides the critic with
a tool for studying communication within socio-cultural contexts.

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Specifically, van Dijk states that the focus on textual or conversational


structures derives its framework from the cognitive, social, historical,
cultural, or political contexts. Van Dijk's approach, however, differs from a
purely linguistic approach in that it is not limited to the study of the surface
structures and meanings of isolated, abstract sentences.
Ideology also plays a crucial role in van Dijk's (1995) analytical
method. To Van Dijk, ideologies are viewed as interpretation frameworks
which organize sets of attitudes about other elements of modern society.
Ideologies, therefore, provide the cognitive foundation for the attitudes of
various groups in societies, as well as the furtherance of their own goals and
interests.
Van Djik (2004) offers a schema of relations between ideology,
society, cognition and discourse. He contends that within social structures,
social interaction takes place. This social interaction is presented in the
form of text/discourse, which is then cognized according to a cognitive
system/memory. This system/memory consists of short-term memory, in
which strategic process, or decoding and interpretation takes place. Longterm memory, however, serves as a holder of socio-cultural knowledge,
which consists of knowledge of language, discourse, communication,
persons, groups and events existing in the form of scripts. Social (group)
attitudes also reside within long-term memory and provide further decoding
guides. Each of these group attitudes can represent an array of ideologies
which combine to create one's own personal ideology which conforms to
one's identity, goals, social position, values and resources.
Another essential element of van Dijk's thesis, especially as it applies
to an intercultural approach to media analysis, is the systematic analysis of
implicitness. Journalists and media users are in possession of mental models
about the world. Consequently, the text is usually only "the tip of the
iceberg of all information" speakers have about an event or situation they
are talking about (van Dijk 2002, p. 212). The rest is assumed to be

17

supplied by the knowledge scripts and models of the media users, and
therefore usually left unsaid. Hence van Dijk (2002) concludes that the
analysis of the implicit is very useful in the study of underlying ideologies.

2.4.2. Fairclough's Approach


Faircloughs (1989) analysis has moved from focusing on the
whatness of the text description toward the howness and whyness of the text
interpretation and explanation, i.e. why a speaker/writer selects certain
forms or models. There are certain underlying assumptions behind these
selections and these assumptions are never innocent, rather they are
ideologically loaded.
Fairclough (1995) considers CDA as an approach that tends to
investigate the relationships between discursive practices and the social
structures in which they are employed. CDA holds that the relationship is
not usually open to the reader/listener. Hence, it seeks to uncover the causal
and determinative relation existing between the two. Furthermore, it is to
explore the ways such practices are constructed by the ideology which is, in
turn, shaped by the power relations practiced in the community. Language,
according to Fairclough (1995), plays a crucial role in both revealing social
processes and interactions in practice and constructing them. Fairclough
(1989, p.22) views language as "a form of social practice." That is to say, he
maintains that language as "a socially conditioned process" cannot be
abstracted from the society to which it belongs. By viewing language as a
social process, Fairclough (1989) holds that language does not function just
as a passive reflection of the society and the social interaction or processes
that occur there, but it is an indispensable part of the social process. Then,
discourse - a chunk of language beyond a sentence, shaped in the society is
a site for both producing and interpreting the text. The social condition for
producing/interpreting the text is, in turn, related to three levels of social
organization (Fairclough, 1989): (a) the social context in which the text is

18

used (b) the social institution and (c) the society at large. These three levels
play a significant role in producing/interpreting the text. The linguistic
theory Fairclough based his framework on is referred to as Systemic
Functional Linguistics (SFL). The theory takes a functional approach
towards analyzing a text. It aims at examining sentences in their context and
finding the intended meaning expressed by the text. Despite his awareness
of the point that textual features of discourse manifest themselves in
linguistic properties, Fairclough takes an interpretive approach in analyzing
a text instead of a descriptive one which is practiced widely by linguistic
analysis.

2.4.3. Hodge and Kress's Approach


Hodge and Kress (1996) consider language as an entity containing
certain categories and processes. There are certain models, constituting the
categories, used to manifest the relationship existing between texts and
events. These models construct fundamental schemata which are crucial in
classifying the world entities. They introduce the syntagmatic models which
comprise actional and relational models. The former comprises
transactional and non-transactional models. Both of them are concerned
with a sort of action, but in transactional model there are at least two
entities, an agent and the affected ones. The action goes from the agent to
affect the other entity, the affected. In the non-transactive model, however,
there is just one entity. Then, it might not be possible to see whether the
entity, that is present in the text, is affected or is the doer of the action.
Actionals, in general, attempt to constitute "a version of reality" (Hodge &
Kress, 1996, p.164). In the second model, the relational one, the
relationship, mediated by the process, is either that of equative or
attributive: the former relates two entities together, whereas the latter
provides a relationship between an entity and a quality. The relational
contributes in (re)classifying the events and passing judgment on different

19

entities. Based on these syntagms, it is possible to classify the world and the
events occurring in it. What is important to Hodge and Kress, along with
other proponents of CDA, is that selecting transactional over nontransactional, or relationals or actionals is not a matter of mere choice as
such. A selection happens systematically based on an underlying ideology.
In this sense, the syntagmatic model is claimed to be a semantic model that
tries to reveal the intended meaning which is usually expressed opaquely.
The basic models proposed by Hodge and Kress to characterize such
classifications in English are schematized below.
Physical-process transactives
Transactive
Mental-process transactives
Actionals
Physical-process non-transactives
Non-transactive
Syntagmatic

Mental-process non-transactives

models
Qualitative
Attributive
Relationals

Possessive
Equative

2.4.4. van Leeuwen's Approach


Van Leeuwen (1996), while being in line with other proponents of
CDA with regard to the impact of society on the order of discourse, on the
one hand, and the effects of the discourse in the construction,
transformation, or maintenance of the social power and society, on the other
hand, has taken a somewhat different approach in analyzing the text. He has
utilized a socio-semantic approach in which "social actors can be
represented". To put it in van Leeuwen's (1996, p.34) words:

20

the categories I shall propose should, , be seen as pansemiotic: a given culture has not only its own, specific array
of ways of representing the social world but also its own specific
ways of mapping the different semiotics on to this array, of
prescribing, ,what can be realized verbally as well as visually,
what only verbally, what only visually
The full framework has been introduced and explained in chapter
three.

2.5. CDA & Gender Studies


Discourse analysis assumes from the outset that language is invested,
meaning that language is not a neutral tool for transmitting a message but
rather, that all "communicative events" (van Dijk, 1993, p. 250), constitute
"a particular way of talking about and understanding the world (or an aspect
of the world)" (Phillips and Jorgensen, 2002, p. 1) both on the part of the
producer (the writer, the speaker) and on the part of the consumer (the
reader, the audience). As such, discourse analysis references both a theory
of language use - language use as not neutral but invested - and a method
for analyzing language in use.
Thus, on the premise that discourse is invested, critical discourse
analysis operates to actualize the agendas of both speakers and listeners.
This recognition has led to the notion of critical discourse analysis whose
aim is to produce an analysis or "explanatory critique" (Fairclough, 2000,
pp. 235-6) of how and for what purpose language use is invested through
the deployment of specific textual features (lexical, grammatical, semantic),
in order to facilitate understanding of its effects.
It, therefore, explores "the links between language use and sociocultural practice" (Phillips and Jorgensen, 2002, p. 69), and thus the values
and attitudes articulated and the way these are expressed. As such, and
given its assumption of the investedness of language, it is ideally suitable

21

for gender studies since the socio-cultural investigation of gender involves


the analysis of the investments expressed through discursive formations.
From a feminist perspective which assumes that gender is a central
organizing principle of both knowledge and experience and that this
principle expresses vested interests of diverse kinds, critical discourse
analysis which shares that assumption of investedness is an ideal research
tool since it reveals the articulation and operation of that investment
(Cameron & Kulick, 2003; Cameron, 2006). Critical discourse analysis as a
research method, thus, centers on understanding the ideological
machinations of discourse and aims to produce a critique of how discourse
operates to affect certain agendas. In this respect, critical discourse analysis
as a method has much in common with gender studies in that their
objectives, too, involve uncovering ideological agendas which emerge from
the discourses produced in formal and informal exchanges.
As Foucault (1984), one of the cultural theorists associated with the
theorization of the nature and the operations of discourse has argued,
different discourses produce different kinds of truth claims or effects and
have specific relations to authority and power. Discourse, in Foucaults
writings, emerged not as a neutral mode of signifying but as a means for
structuring social relations, knowledge, and power.
Feminist theorists are generally concerned with analyzing power
relations and the way women as individuals and as members of groups
negotiate relations of power. Mills (1997, p.78) contends that
Recent feminist work has moved from viewing women as simply
an oppressed group, as victims of male domination and has tried
to formulate ways of analyzing power as it manifests itself and
as it is resisted in the relations of everyday life.

22

Discourse theory sees power as enacted within the relationships and


thus as something which can be "contested at every moment and in every
interaction" (Mills, 1997, p.88). In this regard, Smith (1990, p. 163) states:
To explore femininity as discourse means a shift away from
viewing it as a normative order reproduced through socialization,
to which women are somehow subordinated. Rather femininity is
addressed as a complex of actual relations vested in texts.

2.6. CDA, Curriculum and Ideology


In the Marxist tradition ideology is a term developed to talk about
how cultures are structured in ways that enable the group holding power to
have the maximum control with the minimum of conflict. This is not a
matter of groups deliberately planning to oppress people or alter their
consciousness (although this can happen), but rather a matter of how the
dominant institutions in society work through values, conceptions of the
world, and symbol systems, in order to legitimize the current order.
Briefly, this legitimization is managed through the widespread
teaching (the social adoption) of ideas about the way things are, how the
world really works and should work. These ideas (often embedded in
symbols and cultural practices) orient people's thinking in such a way that
they accept the current way of doing things, the current sense of what is
natural, and the current understanding of their roles in society. This
socialization process, the shaping of cognitive and affective interpretations
of social world, is called, by Gramsci (1971), hegemony. According to
Althusser (1994), it is carried out by the state ideological apparatuses -- by
the churches, the schools, the family, and through cultural forms (such as
literature, and advertising).
As one of its major objectives, CDA generally seeks a socially just
curriculum. The proponents of this approach (Frein, 1998; Hodge and
Kress, 1996; Kress, 1996) approve of the crucial effects of the curriculum

23

on the learner. They share the conception that the curriculum is to construct
the future social subject.
Van Dijk (2001) states that textbooks are ideologies embedded in the
curriculum. He claims that enforcing hegemony and dominance over the
community is achieved by controlling discourse.
As Althusser (cited in Fairclough 1991, p.26) argues, "ideology
works by disguising its ideological nature"; therefore, learners being
exposed to ideologies presented in textbooks would most likely accept them
with no resistance.
As to the impact of education, in general, and educational texts, in
particular, on the formation of the identity and attitudes of the learners
toward the world and its issues, Martin and van Gunten (2002, p. 44)
emphasize the importance of schooling in shaping the identities of both
teachers and students. In other words, they maintain that educational
settings are places where "identities and social relations are negotiated,
contested, and defended" (p. 44). Britzman, as reported by McCoy 1997,
p.344), similarly holds that "most students have been educated in contexts
that do not address how a social difference is fashioned by relations of
power and how relations of power govern the self". The identity/attitude
formation in the process of schooling is mostly mediated through language,
either in an oral or a written form. Among the means used in an educational
organization, textbooks seem to play a crucial role in the formation of the
learners self conception.
As the above review indicates, CDA has provided researchers with
effective analytical tools to analyze various texts profoundly. CDA, if
employed appropriately, has been used to show how language can
construct, disseminate and maintain a prefabricated ideology.

24

2.7. Related Studies


Otlowski (2003) analyzed an English language textbook used
throughout Japan. Expressway A, was examined for (a) gender bias - the
depiction of women in stereotypical roles, and (b) ethnic group portrayal the visibility and depiction of ethnic groups in the text. The conversations
and illustrations in each chapter were examined. The results showed that
Expressway A, while better than many earlier EFL texts, still depicts women
in roles that no longer accurately represent their role in society. The text
also gives a very sanitized view of the ethnic make-up of the societies and,
in one case, shows a large degree of cultural insensitivity.
Hobson (2003) analyzed excerpts from the Scouts and Guides
handbooks of 1919, using the socio-semantic frameworks of van Leeuwen
(1996). The excerpts were studied in order to consider the representation
and construction of gender identities within the texts written by Robert
Baden-Powell, the founder of the Scouts and Guides movements, and to
specifically determine whether girls and boys were represented differently
in the texts. Therefore, the construction of idealized femininity and
masculinity and the representation of appropriate means of performing such
identities were of most concern in this study. Following the analysis, it was
concluded that boys and girls were indeed represented differently and that
masculinity and femininity as social and ideological constructs, at the
beginning of the twentieth century, were enmeshed in notions of
imperialism, as well as militarism and maternalism, respectively.
Sunderland (2000) used as her data the parent craft literature offered
to new parents, and discussed the discoursal representation of fathers and
mothers in these texts. Grounding her work in the tradition of CDA, she
considered what view of the world (p. 256), over and above other
potential views of the world, is presented through the grammatical and
lexical choices made by the authors of these texts (what van Leeuwen and
Wodak describe as the choices of recontextualization (1999)). Sunderland

25

found it helpful to draw on elements of van Leeuwens (1996) framework in


her analysis of social actors, focusing especially on the notion of exclusion.
She was able to identify occasions where the father was suppressed or
backgrounded in the textual construction of parenthood, which allowed her
in turn to recognize the dominant discourse in operation in this literature:
part-time father/mother as the main parent. Sunderland reported that other
discourses were constructed in addition, which represented mothers and
fathers differently but ultimately as mutual constructs.
Palmer (1998) also utilized van Leeuwens frameworks in her
analysis of the childrens fiction book, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory.
In this paper, Palmer discussed the representation of capitalist production
and consumption, which was a novel undertaking considering van
Leeuwens frameworks have most often been applied to non-fictional media
texts for the purpose of uncovering racist or sexist attitudes. Through the
use of van Leeuwens work, however, Palmer was able to reveal a
perpetuation of a capitalist/worker divide and the unequal power
relationship between workers and capitalists as an ideological undercurrent
behind the text.
van Leeuwens (1996) framework of textual analysis draws
considerably on Hallidays (1985) work on transitivity, and specifically the
division of activities into process types. The analysis of process types has a
history within critical linguistics; for example, Trew in (1979) (cited in
Fairclough, 1992) was able to demonstrate how particular process choices
invoke political or ideological interpretations. Trew analyzed the media
representation of the deaths of South African demonstrators, and found that
the political orientations of the newspapers in which the deaths were
reported determined whether or not the responsibility for the deaths was
overtly attributed. Similarly, Talbot (1995: cited in Talbot, 1998) draws on
the transitivity system in her analysis of an adventure story involving male
and female characters. In this analysis, Talbot found that the male

26

protagonist was predominantly in control especially over and above the


female characters, and because he was largely represented as the
grammatical subject of many transitive verbs, he was predominantly
portrayed as the character that had an affect on the social world. The other
characters, on the other hand, were the grammatical subjects of intransitive
verbs and so did not share the characteristic of making things happen with
the male protagonist. Close textual analysis, therefore, has had much to
reveal about particular social representations of people or characters.

2.7.1. Studies carried out in Iran


Iranian researchers have carried out relevant studies to manifest the
close link between discourse and ideological manipulations.
In this regard, Khosravi Nik (2000) studied the Iranian newspapers
to demonstrate how political ideologies were produced and spread in texts
in a covert way. To do so, he utilized four linguistic features, namely,
nominalization, active/passive, transactive/non-transactive and naming. He
showed how the texts were manipulated to serve certain predetermined
objectives.
Ghane (2001), in an attempt to illustrate the role of language in
disseminating certain ideology, compared some English and Persian plays
and film scripts. He showed the interaction existing between the language
and thought between males and females.
Yarmohammadi and Seif (2004) studied the representation of social
actors in Israel and Palestine struggle by applying Van Leeuwens
framework. The results showed that there was a bilateral link between
discursive structures and ideologies.
Another CDA study was carried out by Amalsaleh (2004). It
investigated the representation of social actors (in terms of social class,
gender) in the EFL textbooks in Iran. The findings of the study revealed
that all the books, irrespective of their goals and audience, mostly appeared

27

to follow an almost similar trend. All, for instance, demonstrated a


differential representation of social actors, showing males and females
differently. It appeared to suggest that such a representation worked toward
portraying the female social actors as belonging to home context or having
limited job opportunities in the society.
Rahimi (2005) studied euphemization and derogation in English and
Persian texts. He showed that a number of discursive structures, and most
prominently euphemization and derogation, have been exploited to
materialize the main ideological function of Negative Other Presentation vs.
Positive Self-Presentation. The biased representations detected in the study
were used to delegitimize the others ideologies and legitimize our own
viewpoints reflected in the social memory of the group.
Norouzi (2006) studied the representation of women characteristics
in narrative texts, within the framework of critical discourse analysis a case
study on the novel Dancers. The result showed that women are not
considered active, well-knowledged and decision makers. Rather they are
depicted as obedient and naive.
In the same line of research, Samaie (2006) analyzed Gardner's
theory of attitudes and motivation in the framework of CDA. The results
showed that discourses on the topic assume a great deal of ideological
slanting in the sense that they typically involve the superiority of the second
language community and the things associated with it but the inferiority of
the first language community and the things associated with it.
Heidari Tabrizi and Razmjoo (2006) studied the representation of
social actors in Persian discourse with respect to the socio-semantic
Features. A text taken from Iran newspaper was analyzed applying van
Leeuwens (1996) framework to depict the socio-semantic features in the
text. The analysis indicated that socio-semantic features such as exclusion
(suppression and backgrounding) and inclusion (passivation and activation,
determination and indetermination) were utilized largely in the Persian texts

28

and these features provide the readers with a clearer picture of the text in
comparison with linguistic representations.

29

CHAPTER THREE
METHODOLOGY
3.1. Introduction
This chapter will be presented in the following way. First the data for
the study as well as the criteria for selecting the data will be discussed.
Then, the method adopted for the analysis will be introduced.

3.2. Data for the Study


The present study is an attempt to analyze Interchange Third Edition series
a revised edition of New Interchange in the rubric of CDA. The series is one
of the most successful ESL textbooks around the world and is very popular
in Iran. In this regard, Dastpak (2007) conducted a study to investigate
teachers' attitudes toward New Interchange series in Iran EFL context. As
indicated by the results of the study most teachers, in general, believed that
the series is appropriate for their language teaching aims. He concluded that
New Interchange series appears to be an effective device for language
teachers to obtain their aims as well as the language institutes aims.
In the introduction section of the previous edition, it is claimed that
throughout New Interchange L2 learners are presented with authentic
communication, natural and useful language. (Richards, 2001, p. iv). The
textbooks seem to have been prepared and published free from any
officially or institutionally prefabricated inclinations. Referring to the
impact of CDA and critical theory on instructional materials, the author,
Richards states that:
Teachers are now encouraged to examine and confront the
underlying ideologies of texts and textbooks. Textbooks, no
longer seen as indispensable tools, are viewed as controlling

30

instruments, hindering the creativity of the teacher, maintained in


place through the pressure of publishers, and may result in the
deskilling of teachers through their recycling of old, but tried and
tested teaching techniques. They are transmitters of a dominant
and dominating ideology ... Content of books is carefully
scrutinized to ensure that they represent diversity

3.3. Data Analysis


The concept of critical discourse analysis and the analytical
framework of van Leeuwen (1996) are employed to elucidate both the
differences in gender representation in the texts (if any) and to answer
research questions more generally.

3.3.1. Analytical framework


Van Leeuwen's (1996) framework, representing various social actors,
has been advantaged to be used as a basis for the analysis of Interchange
Third Edition series. The following are definitions, elaborations and
exemplifications of the framework in van Leeuwen's (1996, pp.32-69) own
.words
Exclusion

.I

Representations include or exclude social actors to suit their interests


and purposes in relation to the readers for whom they are intended. Some of
the exclusions may be 'innocent', details which readers are assumed to
know already, or which are deemed irrelevant to them; others tie in close to
the propaganda strategy of creating fear, and of setting up immigrants as
enemies of 'our' interests. Some exclusions have no traces in the
representation, excluding both the social actors and their activities. Such
radical exclusion can play a role in a critical comparison of different
representations of the same social practice, but not in an analysis of a single
.text, for the simple reason that it leaves no traces behind
Suppression: It is a kind of exclusion where there is no reference to

31

the social actor(s) in question anywhere in the text. It is realized through


passive agent deletion, beneficiary deletion, and nominalization process or
through non-finite clauses with -ing and -ed participles. Suppression can
also be realized through non-finite clauses which function as a grammatical
participant. As is seen in the following statement: "To maintain this policy
".is hard
Nominalizations and process nouns similarly allow the exclusion of
social actors. As an example consider support and stopping in "The level of
".support for stopping immigration altogether was at a postwar high
Backgrounding: This term refers to the exclusion which is less
radical; the excluded social actors may not be mentioned in relation to a
given activity, but are mentioned elsewhere in the text and we can infer
with reasonable [] certainty who they are. They are not so much excluded
.as deemphasized, pushed into the background
Backgrounding can result from simple ellipses in non-finite clauses
with -ing and -ed participles, in infinitival clauses with to and in paratactic
clauses. In all these cases the excluded social actor is included elsewhere in
the same clause or clause complex. It can be realized in the same way as
suppression, but with respect to social actors who are included elsewhere
.in the text
II. Inclusion

Activation: It occurs when social actors are represented as the


active, dynamic forces in an activity as in: "Children seek out aspects of...".
Passivation is used when the social actors are represented as 'undergoing'
the activity, or as being 'at the receiving end of it', This may be realized by
grammatical participant roles, by transitivity structures in which activated
social actors are coded as 'actor' in material processes, 'behaver' in
behavioral processes, 'sensor' in mental processes, 'sayer' in verbal
( ... ) processes or 'assigner' in relational processes

32

Subjected social actors: Passivated social actor can be subjected or


beneficialised. Subjected social actors are treated as objects in the
.representation, for instance as objects of exchange
Beneficialized social actors form a third party which, positively or
negatively, benefits from the action. For instance, in the following
statement 'African street vendors' are passivated: "80 young white thugs
attacked African street vendors." Or in the following sentence 'the young
man' is passivated: "The young man was badly shot yesterday." The
following statement presents an example of beneficialized social actors:
"Australia was bringing in about 70,000 migrants a year." Here the about
70,000 migrants are subjected to the activity of 'bringing in' while in the
next sentence 'cities like Vancouver' are beneficialized in relation to
bringing: "22,000 Hong Kong arrived last year, bringing bulging wallets to
".cities like Vancouver
Genericization and Specification: The choice between generic and
specific reference is another important factor in the representation of social
actors; they can be represented as classes or as specific, identifiable
individuals .... Genericization may be realized by the plural without article
:(see the following example)
".Non-European immigrants make up 6.5 per cent of the population"
And it may be realized by the singular with a definite article or
:indefinite article
" .... Allow the child to cling to"
".Maybe a child senses that from her mother"
The mass nouns as well as the present tense can indicate the
presence of genericization. The presence of numerative has been
.interpreted as realizing specific reference
Individualization: Social actors can be referred to as individuals:
" .... "The ministry for sport and Recreation; Mr. Brown, said
Assimilation: Social actors can be referred to as groups which are

33

realized by plurality, by a mass noun or a noun denoting a group of people,


as ... 'this nation' and 'the community'. Aggregation refers to a kind of
assimilation which qualifies groups of participants, treating them as
statistics ... and is often used to regulate practice and to manufacture
consensus opinion, even though it presents itself as merely recording
facts .... It is realized by the presence of definite or indefinite quantifiers as
is seen in the following statement: "Forty per cent of Australians were born
".overseas
Collectivization is another type of assimilation which does not
treat groups of participants as statistics. The phrase 'this nation' is a mass
noun which is interpreted as an instance of assimilation in the following
sentence: "Is he entitled to believe that this nation, ..., is somehow
"?impervious to racist sentiment
Association refers to groups formed by social actors and/or groups
of social actors (either generically or specifically referred to) which are
never labeled in the text (although the actors or groups who make up the
association may of course be named and/or categorized). In other words,
such groups are made in pursue of achieving certain objectives. Hence,
these groups never make up stable or institutionalized groups and that's why
.they may be formed or unformed (dissociation) as the condition demands
Indetermination occurs when social actors are represented as
unspecified, 'anonymous' individuals or groups. Indetermination
anonymizes social actors. For instance, the word 'someone' in the following
is an instance of indeterminate social actor: "Someone had put flowers on
".the teacher's desk
Indetermination can also be realized by generalized exophoric
reference as in: "They won't let you go to school until you are five years
".old
Differentiation explicitly differentiates an individual social actor...
from a similar actor, creating the difference between the 'self and the 'other',

34

" ....as in ".... Others are downtown people from places like
Determination refers to situations where the social actor's identity
is specified. Determination comprises different types which will come
.below
Nomination and Categorization: Social actors can be represented
either in terms of their unique identity, by being nominated, or in terms of
identities and functions they share with others (categorization), and it is,
again, always of interest to investigate which social actors are, in a given
discourse, categorized and which nominated .... '" Nomination is typically
realized by proper noun, which can be formalization (surname only, with or
without honorifics), semi-formalization (given name and surname ...), or
informalization (given name only). In addition to proper nouns, other items
may be used for the purpose of nomination. Such nominations may make it
difficult to make a distinction between nomination and categorization as in:
"."Turkish Sultan give me back my diamond button
Functionalization and identification: Functionalization occurs
when social actors are referred to in terms of an activity, in terms of
something they do, for instance an occupation or role .... It is typically
realized in one of the following ways: first, by a noun, formed from a verb
through suffixes such as -er, -ant, -ent, and -ian. Identification occurs when
social actors are defined, not in terms of what they do, but in terms of what
they, more or less permanently, or unavoidably, are. Van Leeuwen(1996)
distinguishes three types: classification, relational identification and
.physical identification
Classification refers to conditions when the social actors are
represented in terms of the major categories by means of which different
classes of people are differentiated. The categories include: age, gender,
.provenance, class, ethnicity, etc

Relational identification represents social actors in terms of their


personal, kinship or work relation to each other, and is realized by a closed

35

.'set of nouns denoting such relations as 'friend', 'aunt', 'colleague

Physical identification refers to terms representing social actors in


terms of physical characteristics which uniquely identify them in a given
.context as in: "A little girl with a long, fair pigtail came

Impersonalized social actors: social actors can also be


impersonalized, represented by other means; for instance, by abstract nouns
whose meaning does not include the semantic feature "human" .... There
.are two types of impersonalization: abstraction and objectivation

Abstraction occurs when social actors are represented by means of


a quality assigned to them by the representation .... They are being assigned
the quality of being problematic, and the quality (such as 'poor', 'black',
.'unskilled' ... ) is then used to denote them

Objectivation occurs when social actors are represented by means


of reference to a place or thing closely associated either with their person
or with the activity they are represented as being engaged in. In other
words, objectivation is realized by metonymical reference. A number of
types of objectivation are particularly common: spatialization, utterance
.autonomization, instrumentalization and somatization

Spatialization is a form of objectivation in which social actors are


represented by means of reference to a place with which they are, in the
given context, closely associated, as it is seen in: "Australia was bringing
".in about 70,000 migrants a year

Utterance autonomization is a form of objectivation in which


social actors are represented by means of reference to their utterances.
:Example
".... This concern, the report noted, was reflected"

Instrumentalization is a form of objectivation in which social


actors are represented by means of reference to the instrument with which
.they carry out the activity which they are represented as being engaged in

36

Example: "A 120 mm mortar shell slammed into Sarajevo's


".marketplace

Somatization is a form of objectivation in which social actors are


represented by means of reference to a part of their body. For example:
"."She put her hand on Mary Kate's shoulder
More generally, impersonalization can have one or more of the
following effects: it can background the identity and/or role of social actors;
it can lend impersonal authority or force to an activity or quality of a social
actor; it can add positive or negative connotation to an activity or utterance
.of a social actor

Overdetermination occurs when social actors are represented as


participating, at the same time, in more than one social practice. There are
four major categories of overdetermination: inversion, symbolization,
.connotation, and distillation

Inversion is a form of overdetermination in which social actors are


.connected to two practices, which are, in a sense, each other's opposites
.There are two types of inversion: anachronism, and deviation

Anachronism is often used to say things that cannot be said


straightforwardly; for instance, to offer social and political criticism in
circumstances where this is prescribed by official or commercial
.censorship, or to naturalize ideological discourses

Deviation is a form of inversion in which social actors are


involved in certain activities, which are represented by means of reference
to social actors who would not normally be eligible to engage in these
activities. Deviation almost always serves the purpose of legitimation; the
.failure of deviant social actor confirms the norms

Symbolization occurs when a 'fictional' social actor or a group of


social actors stands for actors or groups in non-fictional social practices.
.The fictional actor often belongs to a mythical, distant past

37

Connotation occurs when a unique determination (a nomination or


.physical identification) stands for a classification or functionalization

Distillation realizes over determination through a combination of


generalization and abstraction; then, it is a form of over determination
which connects social actors to several social practices by abstracting the
.same feature from the social actors involved in these several practices
Figure 3.1 summarizes, in the form of a system network, the ways in
.which social actors can be represented in discourse

38

As one type of discourse (here an ESL textbook) does not include all
the categories and modes of representation, for practical purposes, the
following elements will be considered to function as the criterion for the
analysis: Inclusion, Exclusion, Activation, Subjection, Beneficialization,
Participation, Possessivation, Circumstantialization, Functionalization,
Classification, Relational Identification, Formalization,
Semiformalization, Informalization, Indetermination, Abstraction,
Objectivation, Genericization, Individualization, Collectivization.
Furthermore, in order to analyze the type of activity male and female
social actors are represented as being active in, it is useful to draw on
Hallidays work on the transitivity system, which construes the world of
experience into a manageable set of process types (Halliday, 2004, p. 170),
and codifies the actors of those processes as Actor in material processes,
Behaver in behavioural processes or Senser in mental processes, Sayer in
verbal process or Assigner in relational processes.
Halliday (2004) identifies two forms of representation of experience:
the "outer" experience, represented as actions or events; the "inner"
experience, represented as reactions and reflection on the outer experience.
Material process clauses construe the outer experience, as in: "During the
European scramble for Africa, Nigeria fell to the British.'' Mental process
clauses construe the inner experience as in "Do you know the city?"
Processes of identifying and classifying are called relational process
clauses as in "Usually means mostly." Behavioural processes are on the
borderline between material and mental processes. They represent actions
that have to be experienced by a conscious being as in "Peopole are
laughing." Verbal processes represent verbal actions as in "so we say
that"

39

3.4. Presentation of the Analysis


In this study all the sentences of the reading passages have been
critically analyzed according to the features introduced by van Leeuwen
(1996) and Halliday's (2004) transitivity model. Then the features found in
the texts have been examined to see if they follow an ideologically charged
pattern and if so what the nature of this ideological move can be. Finally,
based on the analyses and the tables provided, a discussion has been
presented.

40

CHAPTER FOUR
ANALYSIS AND DISCUSSION
4.1. Introduction
In this research an attempt has been made to analyze the reading
passages of the Interchange Third Edition series by focusing particularly on
the representation of female and male social actors. As noted earlier, van
Leeuwen's framework (1996) as well as Halliday's transitivity model (2004)
are applied to serve this purpose. The data will be analyzed in three
sections: deletion, rearrangement (role allocation) and substitution. In order
to establish the statistical significance of the difference in the discursive
structures employed for males and females, the chi-square test will be used.

4.2. Deletion
The process of inclusion/exclusion, categorized under deletion, is a
central concern for critical discourse analysis. According to van Leeuwen
(1996, p.38) "representations include or exclude social actors to suit their
interests and purposes in relation to the readers for whom they are
intended". Some exclusions may be innocent, details which readers assume
to know already or which are deemed irrelevant to them; others impose
certain ideologies on the readers especially EFL learners who are not
competent enough to uncover the hidden ideologies. Tables 4.1and 4.2
summarize the inclusion and exclusion of males and females:
Table 4.1: Inclusion and exclusion in the Interchange Third Edition series
Female
Male

Inclusion
465
289

Exclusion
8
9

41

Total
473
298

Table 4.2: Inclusion and exclusion in the Interchange Third Edition series in
percentage
Inclusion
98.31%
96.98%

Female
Male

Exclusion
1.69%
3.02%

Total
100%
100%

As Tables 4.1 and 4.2 show female social actors are included with
considerably more frequency and male social actors are excluded more
frequently. To further explore the difference, a chi square test was run. The
results appear in Table 4.3.
Table 4.3: Chi-square results for inclusion and exclusion in the Interchange
Third Edition series

Inclusion
Exclusion

Female

Male

X2

Asymp. Sig.

465
8

289
9

41.082
.059

.000
0.808

Table 4.3 indicates that the difference is statistically significant (x 2 =


41.08 p<0.001). Qualitative analysis, also lends support to such a claim.
Out of 41 texts analyzed, 3 texts have been allocated to successful and
famous women including J.K. Rowling while only one to a male character
(Ricky Martin). Furthermore, other less familiar characters such as Sandra
Cisneros, a Mexican-American writer, Se Ri Pak, a Korean golf player,
Kristina Ivanova, a gymnast are introduced briefly in a paragraph while
male characters such as Suketa Mehta, an Indian writer, is only named once
at the end of the text, and his gender may remain unknown to learners since
there is no reference to him through pronouns to determine his gender.
The following examples reflect positive attitude toward females and
negative toward males. In a text in Book 2 page 69 a female social actor is
included as "a good example of making the right decision considering one's
own personality". In the text mentioned she quits studying counseling and

42

law for studying film which suits her personality and eventually she
succeeds in her career. In another text, Book 3 page 13, a male social actor
is introduced as an example of being a good worker but losing his job due
to the company's policy to cut its workforce. What follow this opening
paragraph are some hints for the readers in order not to lose their job in case
of workforce cutbacks which implicitly reflects his inability to maintain his
job.

4.3. Role Allocation (Rearrangement)


Role allocation is another discursive structure which also plays a
significant part in CDA. Van Leeuwen (1996, p. 43) contends
"representations can reallocate roles; rearrange the social relations between
the participants". This study examines the representation of the two social
actors with regard to their actions since they are inextricably related,
especially considering the nature of actions in relation to which social
actors are activated and passivated.
Table 4.4: Role allocation in the Interchange Third Edition series
Activation
Female
Male

345
229

Passivation
Subjected
Beneficialized
28
9
13
4

Total
382
246

Table 4.5: Role allocation in the Interchange Third Edition series in


percentage
Activation
Female
Male

90.32%
93.08%

Passivation
Subjected
Beneficialized
7.33%
2.35%
5.28%
1.64%

43

Total
100%
100%

As Tables 4.4 and 4.5 indicate both social actors are frequently
activated (females: 90.32% and males: 93.08%) and in a few cases
passivated (females: 9.68% and males: 6.92%). This may be due to the fact
that the books are compiled for learners whose command of English is not
supposed to be high.
Table 4.6: Comparison of male and female role allocation in the
Interchange Third Edition series in percentage
Activation
Female
Male
Total

60.1%
39.9%
100%

Passivation
Subjected
Beneficialized
68.29%
69.23%
31.71%
30.77%
100%
100%

A comparison of male and female activation (39.9% and 60.1%


respectively) demonstrates the fact that in the books analyzed females are
more frequently represented as the active and dynamic forces in the society.
Table 4.6 summarizes the results. (It can be more elucidated by analyzing
the verbs in relation to which social actors are activated.)
Table 4.7: Chi-square results for Role allocation in the Interchange Third
Edition series

Activation
Subjection
Beneficialization

Female

Male

X2

Asymp.
Sig.

345
28
9

229
13
4

23.443
5.488
1.923

.000
.019
.166

According to Table 4.7 the difference is statistically significant (x 2 =


23.44 P<0.001). Furthermore, female activation, in comparison to male
activation, is more frequently realized by participation which contributes to

44

foregrounding women more than men which is statistically significant


(p<0.001, Table 4.8).
Table 4.8: Chi-square results for Activation in the Interchange Third
Edition series
Activation

Female

Male

X2

Asymp. Sig.

Participation
Possessivstion
Circumstantialization

338
6
1

225
3
1

22.680
1.00
.00

.000
0.317
1.00

4.3.1. Transitivity
Concerning transitivity and the activity in which social actors are
involved, as Tables 4.9 and 4.10 indicate both males and females are mostly
activated in relation to material processes: females 50.30%, males 48.90%
(Table 4.10), followed by relational, mental, verbal, and behavioral
processes, respectively. However; the series under study appeared to
represent male and female social actors differently; that is females are
represented as the actors of material process as many as 170 times, while
males are represented as actors in material process in 110 cases (Table
4.10).
Table 4.9: Transitivity in representing male and female social actors in the
Interchange Third Edition series
Participation Material Mental Verbal Relational Behavioral Total
process process process process
process
Female
170
60
32
69
7
338
Male
110
35
31
43
6
225
Table 4.10: Transitivity in representing male and female social actors in the
Interchange Third Edition series in percentages
Participation Material Mental Verbal Relational Behavioral Total
process process process process
process
Female
50.30% 17.75% 9.46%
20.42%
2.07%
100%

45

Male
48.9% 15.55% 13.77% 19.11%
2.67%
100%
A chi-square test revealed a statically significant difference between
male and female representation as actor in material processes (x 2 = 12.85
p<0.001) (Table 4.11).
Table 4.11: Chi-square results for transitivity in representing male and
female social actors in the Interchange Third Edition series
Activation

Female

Male

X2

Asymp. Sig.

Material process
Mental process
Verbal process
Relational process
Behavioral
process

170
60
32
69
7

110
35
31
43
6

12.857
6.579
0.016
6.036
0.077

.000
0.010
0.900
.014
.782

Furthermore, the nature and sense of the actions involved are


amazing. For instance, females are activated in relation to verbs such as
'parachuting', 'snorkeling'. These words depict them as adventurous and
brave while in case of males similar verbs such as 'scuba diving' are
changed into process nouns. The following examples illustrate the point
further:
Example 4.1. Jenny: I almost crashed but I parachuted away just in time.
(Book 1 p. 69)
Example 4.2. Ray, have you ever experienced any dangers while scuba
diving? (ibid)
Similarly female's success has been expressed through using verbs
which give prominence to the action while male's success is linguistically
realized through process nouns which in the following example is preceded
by the demonstrative 'this' instead of the possessive pronoun 'his'.
Example 4.3. She made her breakthrough. (Book 2, p. 7)

46

Example 4.4. She stared in a number of high-profile movies. (Book 2, p. 7)


Example 4.5. After this success, he moved back to the U.S. (Intro, p. 105)
In another text, Book 3 page 105, a male social actor that is Martin
Luther King, Jr. is activated in relation to 'plagiarizing' while a female
social actor Christine Pelton, a biology teacher in Kansas is activated in
relation to 'giving failing grades' to students who have 'plagiarized'. As this
example shows, in addition to the statistically significant differences, the
sense and nature of the action considered for each gender is very different.
Interestingly, female and male social actors are equally represented
as actors of 'earn' and "make salary" which considers equal access for
women to economic independence and a rightful place in organizational
life.
Example 4.6. She has become internationally famous and now earns
around $40 million a year. (Book 2, p. 91)
Example 4.7. He makes a good salary but we don't save very much money.
(Book 1, p. 13)
Likewise, females and males are equally involved in household
chores. The following examples illustrate the point further.
Example 4.8. Steve has to help her more with the housework. (Book 1,
p.35)
Example 4.9. He's also doing a few household chores. (Book 1, p.35)
Example 4.10. A mother to a family counselor: I've been cooking his meals
and doing his laundry. (Book 2 p.105)
Example 4.11. My mother is going to cook noodles. (Intro p.11)

47

Females and males equally appear in creative, transformative clauses


and also clauses indicating motion.
Creative type:
Example 4.12. As a child he appeared in TV commercials. (Intro p.105)
Example 4.13. Christina first appears on TV in star search-a TV talent
show. (Book 1, p.27)
Transformative type:
Example 4.14. Evan: when I was growing up I always thought I would
become a teacher or maybe an artist. (Book 3 p. 77)
Example 4.15. Kidman grew up in a suburb of Sydney.
Indicating motion:
Example 4.16. Maya: I go to work at 10:00 p.m. (Intro, p. 41)
Example 4.17. Lamar: I go to school every day from 9:00 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.
(Book 1, p. 13)
It seems that the writer has done this in order to reflect a gender
neutral attitude; however, as it was observed, the texts under analysis tend
to present a gender bias. This ideology is overtly and sometimes covertly
represented in the textbook. It seems attempts have been made to bring
women from margin to the center.
The overall frequency of female activation in mental clauses was
found to be nearly twice as much as male activation (See Table 4.9). A
statistically significant chi-square (x2 = 6.57, p<0.05) indicated that females
are activated more frequently in relation to mental activities (See Table
4.11). Similarly, females are more frequently activated in relation to verbs
including "know", and "learn" than men.
In book 3 unit 9, although it has been tried to present a genderneutral text in that the first paragraph describes a man and the second one a
woman both failing to remember an important issue, the same phenomenon
has been linguistically realized differently.

48

Example 4.18. He had forgotten the name. (Book 3 p. 63)


Example 4.19. She could not remember where she had put it. (ibid)
Although both statements reflect the same phenomenon, the woman
is activated in relation to and associated with 'remembering' and the male
with 'forgetting'. Obviously, the two verbs have different effects on the
reader/listener.
Surprisingly, females appear 32 times as 'sayers' in verbal processes
and males 31 times. They are, therefore, rather equally activated in relation
to semiotic actions. This stands in sharp contrast to the popular stereotype
that speaking is one of the most essential female activities.
Furthermore, females are activated in relational processes as many as
69 times and males 43 times. As Table 4.11 shows the difference is
statistically significant (x2=6.03, p<0.05). Moreover, the attribute possessed
by female carrier (possessor) has mostly positive connotations while males
are mostly carrier of attributes with negative connotations. The following
examples illustrate the point further:
Example 4.20. Robert: I had an awful weekend. (Intro, p. 97)
Example 4.21. The doctors warned his parents that he might have learning
difficulties. (Book 2, p. 83)
Example 4.22. Kelly: I had a great weekend. (Intro, p.97)
Example 4.23. Brittany: I have a job at the library. (Intro, p. 41)
Both social actors are involved in behavioral processes in a few
cases, females 7 times and males 6 times comprising 2.07% and 2.67% of
the total, respectively (Table 4.10).

4.4. Substitution

49

There are different discursive features through which social actors


are represented as shown below:
Table 4.12: Representation of male and female social actors with
Substitution features in the Interchange Third Edition series

Personalization

Personalization/
Impersonalization
Functionalization
Classification
Relational
identification
Formalization
Semiformalization
Informalization
Indetermination
Objectivation

Impersonalization

Female

Male

40
45
34

33
30
12

16
33
63
30
2

8
32
37
32
2

263

186

Abstraction

Total

Representations either personalize social actors, i.e. "represent them


as human beings, whose meaning includes the feature human" (van
Leeuwen 1996, p. 59) or impersonalize them. As Table 4.12 indicates in the
text under analysis male and female social actors are almost always
personalized. Only in two cases males and females are objectivated or
rather semi-objectivated (0.76%, and 1.08% for females and males,
respectively). Results are reported in Table 4.13.
Example 4.24. His lungs can take in oxygen from smoky air. (Book
3, p.27)

50

Example 4.25. They [her paintings] have sold for as much as


$80,000. (Book 2, p. 83)
Furthermore, both social actors are frequently determinated
(represented through functionalization, classification, relational
identification, formalization, semiformalization, and Informalization),
females 88.51 and males 82.61. As Table 4.13 shows personalization is
mostly realized by informalization (females 23.95%, and males 19.9%)
followed by classification (females 17.11% and males 16.3%).
Table 4.13: The percentage of substitution features for male and female
social actors in the Interchange Third Edition series
Personalization/
Impersonalization
Functionalization
Classification
Relational
identification
Formalization
Semiformalization
Informalization
Indetermination
Objectivation
Abstaction
Total

Female

Male

15.21%
17.11%
12.93%

17.74%
16.13%
6.45%

6.08%
12.55%
23.95%
11.41%
0.76%
0%
100%

4.30%
17.20%
19.9%
17.2%
1.08%
0%
100%

Concerning categorization, as Table 4.13 indicates, females and


males are almost equally functionalized (15.21% and 17.74% respectively)
and classified (17.11% and 16.13% respectively) statistically. Both social
actors are mostly classified in terms of their age and provenance. Here are
some examples:
Example 4.26. Ms. Cisneros is a Mexican-American writer. (Intro,
p. 49)

51

Example 4.27. Her father, an Australian, was a student in Hawaii at


the time. (Book 2, p. 7)
Moreover both social actors are rather equally functionalized
(x2=0.67, p>0.4, Table 4.14) in that females as well as males are associated
with high status activities which challenges traditional values that exclude
and demean the value of women in society, implying that women are as
vital as men for the community's function.
Example 4.28. Judy is working as a hospital administrator. (Book
1, p.35)
Example 4.29. Evan: I was the head of the public relations
department in a major telecommunication company. (Book 3, p.77)
Table 4.14: Chi-square results for substitution features for male and female
social actors in the Interchange Third Edition series

Functionalization
Classification
Relational
identification
Formalization
Semiformalization
Informalization
Indetermination
Objectivation

Female

male

X2

40
45
34

33
30
12

0.671
3.00
10.522

.413
.083
.001

16
33
63
30
2

8
32
37
32
2

2.667
.015
6.760
.065
000

.102
.901
.009
.799
1.000

Asymp. Sig.

Females are more frequently identified in terms of their kinship and


personal relations to other human beings than males. The difference is
statistically significant (x2 = 10.52, P<0.01, Table 4.14). Moreover, in 13
cases males are identified in terms of their relations (kinship or personal) to
a female while in only five cases females are introduced in terms of their

52

relations with males. The textbooks under analysis tend to represent females
as more independent actors.
Example 4.30. Mrs. Aoki: My husband is going to be 60 tomorrow. (Intro,
p. 77)
Example 4.31. Kathyo: My father's working outside. (Intro, p. 35)
Van Leeuwen (1996) considers nominations an important factor in
representing social actors. In the corpus (see Table 4.15) out of 189
instances of nomination 112 cases (including 16 formal, 33 semiformal, 63
informal) refer to females and 77 cases (including 8 for formal, 32
semiformal, 37 informal) to males. As Table 4.15 indicates females are
more frequently referred to informally than males yielding a statistically
significant difference (x2 = 6.76, P<0.0, Table 4.14).
Table 4.15. Percentage of nomination in the Interchange Third Edition
series
Nomination
Formalization
Semiformalization
Informalization
Total

Female
16
33
63
112

Male
8
32
37
77

Total
24
65
100
189

As Tables 4.16 and 4.17 indicate, the two social actors are most frequently
represented through specification and mostly individualized (females
96.74% and males 90.75%).
Table 4.16. Genericization /Specification
Genericization
Specification
Individualization Collectivation
Female
4
445
11
Male
8
265
19

53

Total
460
292

Table 4.17: Genericization /Specification in percentage


Genericization
Specification
Total
Individualization Collectivation
Female
0.87%
96.74%
2.39%
100%
Male
2.74%
90.75%
6.51%
100%
According to Table 4.18, females are individualized more than male
and this distinction is statistically significant (x2 = 45.63, P<0.001). The
difference for genericization and collectivation as the Table 4.18 shows is
not significant, however.
Table 4.18: Chi-square results for genericization/specification
Female

Male

X2

4
445
11

8
265
19

1.333
45.634
2.133

Genericization
Individualization
Collectivation

Asymp. Sig.
0.248
0.000
0.144

According to Van Leeuwen (1996) individualization is of primary


significance in CDA. In the books analyzed, individuality of females has
been emphasized and, therefore, females are depicted as more independent
individuals than males.
With regard to the pronouns used to represent the actors, it is noticed
that males are referred to in third person as many as 121 times versus 63
cases of first person pronouns (Table 4.19).
Table 4.19: Personal pronouns used in the Interchange Third Edition series

Female
Male

1st person
pronoun
134
63

2nd person
pronoun
23
7

3rd person
pronoun
154
121

Total
311
191

As Table 4.20 indicates males are more frequently referred to in third


person (63.35%) while females are almost equally represented through first
and third person pronouns (43.09% and 49.51%, respectively).

54

Table 4.20: Personal pronouns used in the Interchange Third Edition series
in percentage

Female
Male

1st person
pronoun
43.09%

2nd person
pronoun
7.4%

3rd person
pronoun
49.51%

100%

32.98%

3.67%

63.35%

100%

Total

According to Table 4.21 the overall percentage of female first person


pronouns is more than twice as many as male first person pronouns,
yielding a statistically significant difference (x2= 25.58, P<0.001, Table
4.22). This would lead to the prominence of women and would distance the
men from the readers through greater reference to them in the third person.
Table 4.21: Comparison of male and female personal pronouns in terms of
percentages

Female
Male
Total

1st person
pronoun
68.02%
31.98%
100%

2nd person
pronoun
76.66%
23.33%
100%

3rd person
pronoun
56%
44%
100%

Table 4.22: Chi-square results for personal pronouns for males and females
in the Interchange Third Edition series

1st person
pronoun
2nd person
pronoun
3rd person
pronoun

Female

male

X2

Asymp. Sig.

134

63

25.589

0.000

23

8.533

0.003

154

121

3.960

0.047

55

This, again, contributes to representation of women as independent,


assertive and expressive social actors.
Moreover, it is observed that the proportion of second person
pronouns referring to females to male cases is more than 3:1. Table 4.22
indicates that the difference is statistically significant (x 2 = 8.53, p<0.01).
Hence, females are directly addressed more than males, further distancing
the males from readers.

56

CHAPTER FIVE
SUMMARY, CONCLUSION, AND
IMPLICATIONS
5.1. Introduction
The present study was an attempt to critically analyze Interchange
Third Edition, to uncover its ideological underpinnings.
The texts were analyzed based on the socio-semantic framework
introduced by Van Leeuwen (1996) that was designed to find out the ways
social actors are represented in discourse. This chapter proceeds to give a
summary and conclusion of the key points of the study based on the issue
presented and discussed in previous chapters. The chapter moves further to
end up with the implications of the study.

5.2. Summary and Conclusion


The study was intended to examine the function of language as a
social practice in the Interchange Third Edition series, a skill-based text
book used to teach English as a foreign language in many institutes in Iran
and worldwide. As van Leeuwen (1996) contends, representation is always
motivated; that is, the writers or speakers make an attempt to reflect,
construct, or even justify the pre-planned objectives in mind and since the
represented ideas or actors are not easily accessible, CDA works through to
expose the intended or hidden ideologies. Then the represented ideas or
events may be invisible and have some social outcomes. This visibility of
the represented actor/action had the advantage of being persuasive and is
accepted by the public with no resistance. Therefore, the hidden message
seems to be natural and will become part of the common sense of the
readers/audience.

57

According to CDA analysts, one of the important issues contributing


to gender-role differentiation and gender inequality is the ways social actors
are represented in the media including textbooks. Textbooks as a crucial
tool in constructing social members' identities are used apparently to
convey certain types of knowledge to the learners. However, in addition to
transferring knowledge they are used as influential tools to impose certain
normative outlooks and identities on the members. However, the power
values of this identity are not equal; rather some are observed to be more
powerful than others. Power is the central concept for the ideologies
conveyed because it is concerned with the question of which group or
persons have the linguistic means of proper disputation. The powerful
groups disseminate this ideology that they are superior and other inferior.
The listener/reader accepts the massage with no resistance and therefore
power relations are disseminated and reproduced in text and talk. Linguistic
studies related to power are efforts to make inequalities in the society more
tangible and create the necessary consciousness to prevent these injustices.
To achieve this purpose more effectively, a detailed review of the
related literature was carried out to get a better insight of the current status
of the issue under study. The review mainly focused on CDA and its related
fields to get better knowledge about the critical analysis of written materials
including textbooks.
Having reviewed different approaches to CDA, the researcher
adopted van Leeuwen's framework (1996) to analyze the textbook. The
framework presented various discursive features for analyzing the texts.
The books were analyzed to determine the way male and female social
actors are represented.
To do this, the study examined the representation of male and female
social actors in the textbooks mentioned. The books were analyzed
critically based on van Leeuwen's framework (1996) to determine the way
social actors in questions had been represented. The analysis was mainly

58

intended to answer the following research questions derived from the


objectives of the study:
1. Are social actors represented differently in textbooks under study
and, if so, how is this achieved linguistically?
2. Provided that social actors are represented differently, what
ideological assumptions can account for the difference?
3. Are particular words or expressions used to represent ideologies at
work?
According to the analysis, the discursive structures such as deletion,
role allocation and substitution p
rovided a clear picture of the ways the social actors had been represented in
the books.
To investigate the data statistically, chi-square tests were used to
determine whether the differences were significant. The findings of the
study revealed that the series demonstrated a differential representation of
social actors showing males and females differently in some respects. They
appeared to suggest that such a representation worked towards portraying
the female social actors not only as critical to the society's function as males
but also playing more central roles in some respects.
The first category under which the representation of male and female
social actors was compared was that of deletion. Concerning this discursive
strategy, the books used 'inclusion' extensively for both genders. However,
female social actors were more frequently used. Furthermore, females were
represented as more decisive and successful characters. This reveals a
female oriented ideology present through the text.
The next issue was the roles social actors were given to play in the
representation. The texts under examination tended to depict women as
actors of material processes and the sensers of mental processes more
frequently than men. This is quite important in terms of exertion of power.
Both were equally activated in relation to verbal process, rejecting the

59

popular stereotype that speaking is one of the most essential female


activities. Besides, women were more frequently assigners of positive
attributes in comparison to men. These differences are ideologically
significant in the sense that women were portrayed as more powerful and
intellectual social actors.
Under substitution, both social actors were almost always
personalized and rarely impersonalized. Concerning categorization, both
social actors were equally functionalized and classified. Women were
depicted as holding high status jobs previously dominated by men. Under
identification category, in which the actors "are defined not in terms of what
they do, but what they are" (van Leeuwen, 1996 p. 54) males were
represented more frequently than females through relational identification,
mostly being related to females (e.g. my husband, her father). This feature
was mostly realized through the use of possessive expressions. This
disseminates the ideology that women are more independent, expressive,
and assertive characters.
Furthermore, females were more extensively introduced via first
person pronouns while males mostly through third person pronouns,
distancing the males from the reader and confirming the above mentioned
ideology.
To sum up, the findings of this study corroborate the fact that Critical
Discourse Analysis can be an appropriate tool for revealing ideological
underpinnings of text and talk. In this regard, features introduced by van
Leeuwen turn out to be effective instruments in uncovering hidden
ideologies and the way social actors are represented.
CDA scholars contend that ideologies are constructed, naturalized
and legitimized through language, more especially discourse, as a social
practice (Fairclough, 1989, 1995; van Dijk, 1995, 2002). The present study
revealed the fact that women are represented in Interchange series as

60

prominent, successful, powerful, intellectual, social actors, holding high


status positions.
This is in sharp contrast to the findings of the previous studies in
which women were represented as powerless social actors, mostly
associated with home context, house chores and having limited job
opportunities reflecting misogyny view points (see Amalsaleh, 2004).
Otlowsky (2003) argues that it is not acceptable in this day and age to
perpetuate the image of women as homemakers when women make up such
an integral part of the workforce in both the United States and the United
Kingdom. This is indicative of distortion of realities by writers. In contrast,
the way women are represented in the textbooks under analysis is consistent
with social structures of at least the above mentioned countries. This can be
regarded as an achievement of CDA in bringing changes in the curriculum.
This study suggests a range of further research. This includes critical
analysis of Interchange Third Edition series employing other frameworks
proposed by van Dijk (2004), Fairclough (2001), Hodge and kress (1996),
or a multimodal approach (Kress & van Leeuwen 2001) and comparing the
results with those of the present study. Other studies might also explore the
depiction of ethnic groups in the textbooks. Further work is recommended
to investigate the representation of social actors in conversations and
illustrations. Of particular interest would be studies of teacher and student
talk around the text (Fairclough, 1992) presented in textbooks which go
beyond a traditional representation of gender roles from a critical discourse
perspective.

5.3. Implications of the Study


CDA attempts to provide a systematic way to analyze text and talk to
uncover hidden ideologies; in other words, to expose the taken-forgrantedness of ideological messages or denaturalize ideologies of discourse

61

that have become naturalized over time and are perceived as acceptable and
natural features of discourse.
Textbooks are usually expected to deliver the knowledge that
learners are supposed to look for. However, although they claim to present
the knowledge in the neutral and taken-for-granted fashion. However,
textbooks do not contain just the information pursued by the learners.
Rather, instructional materials as well as other types of discourse can
disseminate and impose certain ideologies on language learners. These
ideologies are hidden in the text and are perceived as common sense by
learners and accepted without resistance.
The results of the present study have shed light on the social and
cultural values embedded in the textbooks which can affect learners'
attitude and world views unconsciously. The findings of such studies will
expose discursive strategies expressing social values of the text, providing
deeper knowledge and understanding of the social and ideological aspects
of the society in which the language is used. Furthermore, these findings
necessitate fostering critical thinking in students. Instructional material
developers as well as teachers should set as their main task to expose
students to ideology-free and gender-neutral texts.
CDA can be used as a powerful device for deconstructing the texts to
come up with their intended ideologies. It is a methodological approach for
those involved in socio-cultural studies. Also, it can be a theory for finding
the manners in which attitudes and identities cause socio-linguistic
variations in different communities.
Concerning the representation of male and female social actors, the
results of the present study are in sharp contrast with those of previously
conducted studies. As mentioned previously (see Otlowsky, 2003;
Amalsaleh, 2004), the texts depicted women in roles that no longer
represented their roles in the society which manifests manipulation of
realities through language. The results of the present study are also

62

indicative of the effects of CDA on the development of instructional


material.
To conclude, it is necessary to indicate that CDA may be applied to
translation as another field of its interest. The act of translation is not purely
linguistic; rather, translation must attend to social and ideological
backgrounds of the writer to be able to convey a message from the source to
the target language. Due to the fact that translation involves the close link
between language and culture, CDA researchers aim at accurately analyzing
the translated message to see how much the ideology of the writer is visible
in the translated text and to what extent cultural values affect the process of
translation.

63

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