IS TÜRKİYE THE DOORKEEPER OF THE EU? TURKISH NEWSPRINT MEDIA DISCOURSES ABOUT TÜRKİYE’S ROLE IN THE REFUGEE CRISIS


Kökpınar Kaya E.

in: Linguistics. Cross Cultural Perspectives, F. Büşra Süverdem,Selen Tekalp, Editor, Peter Lang, Berlin, pp.93-114, 2022

  • Publication Type: Book Chapter / Chapter Research Book
  • Publication Date: 2022
  • Publisher: Peter Lang
  • City: Berlin
  • Page Numbers: pp.93-114
  • Editors: F. Büşra Süverdem,Selen Tekalp, Editor
  • Hacettepe University Affiliated: Yes

Abstract

The present study examines the newsprint media representation of Türkiye’s role in the refugee crisis, especially after the Taliban takeover in Afghanistan. The core objective of the study is to present which discursive strategies and linguistic means are employed by Daily Sabah, the English version of one of the most outstanding pro-governmental conservative newspapers in Türkiye, Sabah. In this respect, Daily Sabah can be dubbed as the mouthpiece and a representative of the policies and political considerations of the Turkish Government. It is also considered as creating Türkiye’s image of the refugee crisis in the international community in terms of its humanitarian stance. The methodological framework of this article is grounded upon the interdisciplinary and multidisciplinary theoretical framework of Critical Discourse Analysis (CDA). CDA addresses social problems and a link between linguistic and social structures. It also seeks to show the relationship between power and discourse. Guided by the tenets of CDA and drawing on the analytical frame of the Discourse Historical Approach (DHA), one of the major frameworks for in-depth analysis of collective identities in CDA tradition, the study investigates 65 news articles in terms of the discursive strategies they use in constructing a portrayal of Türkiye with respect to the specific strategies of nomination, predication, argumentation, perspectivization and intensification. Thus, the study questions how the newspaper linguistically refers to Türkiye as a social actor and what traits and qualifications are attributed to it in positive terms. The study also endeavors to present the ways these positive traits and qualifications are legitimized and justified in argumentation schemes in addition to a positioning of the newspaper’s ideological standpoint and intensification of the epistemic status of the argumentation schemes. In the analysis, a special attention is directed upon the linguistic means, rhetorical and stylistic components such as metaphors, personal deictics, discourse representation etc. The analysis showed that the newspaper represented Türkiye as a host, transition point, destination, home and protector of refugees and the border of Europe. The analysis dependently considered the newspaper’s discursive strategies with respect to the naming, description, and argumentation of Türkiye in the sketching of what Türkiye is not. That is, Türkiye is not a stopover, refugee warehouse and migration camp. What is more, it is not the doorman of the European Union. Within this frame, the newsprint media represent the dominant government ideology in Türkiye and address the discursive framing of the refugee crisis by an echo of the words of political figures in power. Additionally, these representations underline a construction of in-group and out-groups, therefore, a discourse of conflict between Türkiye and the EU, we and the West, us and them. The analysis also addressed a discourse of challenge between Türkiye, constructed as a political and humanitarian power in its active role and involvement in the refugee crisis, and the West superpowers represented as lacking the humanitarian responsibilities.