A Critical Analysis of the Image of Immigrants in Multimodal Texts
Keywords:Visual Grammar, Systemic Functional Linguistics, Multimodality, Immigration, Metafunctions
In this article I will explore the main strategies used to make meaning in different multimodal texts related to immigration. I will pay attention to the way in which each semiotic resource has evolved to be used with other semiotic resources, which has implications in the ideational function of language, and in the way readers create meaning. My corpus of examples belongs to a local newspaper in Alicante, the city with the third highest number of immigrants in Spain. I will explore the reasons why the journalist chooses some linguistic and visual forms instead of others, and the influence of these forms in the creation of meaning. I will also observe how the written text in each article supports the construction of a particular image of immigrants , and will compare the texts for the visual and linguistic construction of immigrants. Through a visual grammar and linguistic analysis I will demonstrate how readers are positioned to have a negative view of immigrants that is supported through linguistic choices in the multimodal texts. In this way, I will point out some of the ways in which Halliday’s metafunctions are interlinked and impact on each other.
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