Measuring Meaning

Culture-Specific Differences in the Linguistic Evocation of Emotionality and Rationality

Authors

  • Ursina Kellerhals Lucerne University of Applied Sciences and Arts
  • Richard Abplanalp Lucerne University of Applied Sciences and Arts
  • Sascha Demarmels Lucerne University of Applied Sciences and Arts
  • Douglas MacKevett Lucerne University of Applied Sciences and Arts
  • Monika Simon Lucerne University of Applied Sciences and Arts
  • Roger Wehrli Lucerne University of Applied Sciences and Arts

DOI:

https://doi.org/10.1558/jrds.v2i1.27104

Keywords:

interdisciplinary approach, emotionality, rationality, cultural differences, global marketing

Abstract

While much research has focused on the linguistic expression of emotion, especially in the advertising industry, little attention has been paid to the linguistic evocation of emotion. This study attempts to redress this issue by employing methods of empirical social research to measure the evocation of emotionality and rationality in recipients. The data was collected online through representative samples (n=3,030) across four countries (US, UK, Germany, Switzerland) using comparative text modules embedded in tourism brochures promoting sustainable hotel stays. On the one hand the results show that theories of the linguistic evocation of emotionality are not borne out in practice. On the other, our findings suggest that linguistic evocation of emotionality and rationality varies across cultures even if the language in which the evocation is triggered is shared (i.e.UK and US).

Author Biographies

Ursina Kellerhals, Lucerne University of Applied Sciences and Arts

Ursina Kellerhals studied English and German language and literature at the University of Zurich. She wrote her doctoral thesis on the impact of English slogans used in Swiss print advertising. After having been a senior project manager in market research for more than a decade, she became a lecturer for Business English and communications at the Institute for Communication and Marketing at the Lucerne University of Applied Sciences and Arts in 2013.

Richard Abplanalp, Lucerne University of Applied Sciences and Arts

Richard Abplanalp has a Master’s degree in English and History from the University of Zurich. Since 1986 he has been working as a lecturer of Business English Communication and is currently Head of the Business Languages Department at the Lucerne University of Applied Sciences and Arts. His research interests lie in English for Specific Purposes (ESP), English business communication and any questions related to methods and didactics in adult teaching.

Sascha Demarmels, Lucerne University of Applied Sciences and Arts

Sascha Demarmels studied German language and literature, Mass Communication and Media Research as well as Cinema Studies at the University of Zurich. She wrote her doctoral thesis on emotionalising strategies of words and images on political posters in the 20th century. She was assistant lecturer at the University of Zurich. Since 2007 she has been working as a lecturer and senior researcher at the Institute for Communication and Marketing at the Lucerne University of Applied Sciences and Arts.

Douglas MacKevett, Lucerne University of Applied Sciences and Arts

Douglas MacKevett studied English Literature and has a Master’s degree in Education. In addition to teaching responsibilities at the Lucerne University of Applied Sciences and Arts, he has taught several courses in intercultural communication. Born in the United States, he has been living abroad since 1992 in Russia, Mexico, and most recently Switzerland. He has been lecturing at the Lucerne University of Applied Sciences and Arts since 2001.

Monika Simon, Lucerne University of Applied Sciences and Arts

Monika Simon studied French and German language and literature at the University of Basel and Paris and intercultural communication at the University of Lugano. She wrote her doctoral thesis in French literature and her Executive Master thesis in intercultural communication on the cultural differences of advertising strategies in the German- and French-speaking parts of Switzerland. Since 2003 she has been working as a lecturer for intercultural communication and Business French and communications at the Institute for Communication and Marketing at the Lucerne University of Applied Sciences and Arts.

Roger Wehrli, Lucerne University of Applied Sciences and Arts

Roger Wehrli has been lecturer and Head of Research at the Institute of Tourism (ITW), Lucerne University of Applied Sciences and Arts, since 2009. He is currently working with the health department of the government of the canton of Zurich. He graduated in Economics at University of Zurich and Lausanne with a special focus on Environmental Economics and Economic History. He attained his doctorate in economics at the Chair of Resource Economics (Prof Dr Lucas Bretschger) at the Center of Economic Research at the ETH Zurich in 2009. His research interests and consulting activities at the Institute of Tourism focus mainly in the areas of sustainable tourism and sports tourism.

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Published

2016-02-16

How to Cite

Kellerhals, U., Abplanalp, R., Demarmels, S., MacKevett, D., Simon, M., & Wehrli, R. (2016). Measuring Meaning: Culture-Specific Differences in the Linguistic Evocation of Emotionality and Rationality. Journal of Research Design and Statistics in Linguistics and Communication Science, 2(1), 53–74. https://doi.org/10.1558/jrds.v2i1.27104

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