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Potentials and limitations of a CDA approach to online resistance to welfare reforms

Date: 12 November 2013 Time: 1.00-2.00 pm

Venue: C89, County South

At the next Literacy Research Discussion Group session (Tuesday 12 November) we will be pleased to welcome Alexander David Pask-Hughes (Lancaster University) who will be speaking on:

Potentials and limitations of a CDA approach to online resistance to welfare reforms

Due to wholesale reforms to welfare in the UK under the current Coalition government, many people, organisations and networks have utilised the affordances of online platforms in order to challenge austerity measures, the assumptions upon which such policies are built and the effects of such policies. Given the history of research discourse of welfare reform from a CDA perspective (e.g. Fairclough 2000; Connor 2007, 2010), it seems to be a useful approach to examining the practices of resistance to welfare reform. However, not only has CDA been slow to utilise computer-mediated data, questions remain over the approach with regard to how much has been said about resistance (Martin 2004), practices of reception (Pennycook 2001) and the language used by critical discourse analysts (Billig 2008). In this paper, I have two aims. Firstly, I outline these criticism of CDA and offer some suggestions for an alternative but complementary approach drawing upon both literacy studies and folk linguistics. Secondly, I show how such an approach might illuminate examples of online practices of resistance to welfare reforms. Such examples are predominantly drawn from the continued resistance to reforms to disability and sickness benefits, and the role of the French IT services corporation AtoS in delivering work capability assessments.

Contact:

Who can attend: Anyone

 

Further information

Organising departments and research centres: Lancaster Literacy Research Centre, Linguistics and English Language

Keywords: Critical discourse analysis, Digital literacies, Literacy, Policy

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Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences
Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences
Lancaster University
Lancaster LA1 4YD
United Kingdom

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