PhD title (provisional) A Corpus-based study of 'Thought for the Day'
Supervisor Professor Wolfgang Teubert
Critical Discourse Analysis and Corpus Linguistics are two distinct disciplines in Linguistics. The aim of my study is to show a way of integrating them, and moreover, to prove that Corpus Linguistics can be used in more disciplines. As a test for this combination of the two disciplines I choose to study a programme Thought for the Day by applying the theories and research methods from CDA (Critical Discourse Analysis) and CL (Corpus Linguistics). Thought for the Day is a daily scripted slot on the Today programme on BBC Radio 4, which is broadcast at around 7.45 am each Monday to Saturday morning.
In my research I will compile a corpus of the past eight years’ texts of the programme, which are all delivered by Christian speakers. Based on the discourse I will try to answer the questions below:
1. What kinds of arguments are used to introduce the concept of God and make it relevant for the rest of the text?
2. How is the case for God/religion argued?
3. Which are the most frequent threads of argumentation?
4. What distinctive language characteristics are seen from Christian speakers?