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The war of the words: The rhetoric of 'Operation Iraqi Freedom' (an informal survey)*

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Abstract:

The political, military and media rhetoric of the March-April 2003 invasion of Iraq is interpreted as a phenomenon of power in relation to an understanding of culture as a site of denegation. Patterns of tautology, euphemism and equivocation are identified and their rhetorical appeal analysed in terms of the denegational structure of each of these figures. The essay is thus governed by an understanding of figuration as instrumental, not ornamental; it shows how rhetoric can be studied as a cultural phenomenon and argues by example that a pragmatics of troping is crucial to such a study.

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: https://doi.org/10.1080/1473578032000151030

Publication date: 2003-10-01

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