Award Date

August 2015

Degree Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)

Department

Communication

First Committee Member

David Henry

Second Committee Member

Sara VanderHaagen

Third Committee Member

Tara McManus

Fourth Committee Member

Robert Futrell

Number of Pages

145

Abstract

Social actors assume a large task when attempting to legitimize their movement and motivate participation. For Occupy Wall Street (OWS) dissidents this task was even greater given that their grievances lie both with government and with large corporations, two of the most influential entities in the United States. Such obstacles sparked an interest in studying the language strategies OWS rhetors employed when attempting to define the movement. This thesis examines these strategies in order to discover how the movement was framed, and how framing processes relate to the collective’s identity. The discourse analyzed includes the initial call to action published in Adbusters magazine, the OWS manifesto, and four slogans that emerged during the occupation of Zucotti Park in New York City.

Keywords

Collective Identity; Framing; Identification; Occupy Wall Street; Rhetoric; Rhetorical Criticism

Disciplines

Communication | Rhetoric

Language

English


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