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  • Cited by 6
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    This article has been cited by the following publications. This list is generated based on data provided by CrossRef.

    Adegoju, Adeyemi 2016. “We Need More than Jingles”: Discursive practices of resistance in the Nigerian public׳s responses to the rebranding Nigeria campaign. Discourse, Context & Media,

    Abdelhay, Ashraf Makoni, Busi Makoni, Sinfree and Mugaddam, Abdel Rahim 2011. The sociolinguistics of nationalism in the Sudan: the politicisation of Arabic and the Arabicisation of politics. Current Issues in Language Planning, Vol. 12, Issue. 4, p. 457.

    Abdelhay, Ashraf 2010. A critical commentary on the discourse of language rights in the Naivasha language policy in Sudan using habitus as a method. International Journal of the Sociology of Language, Vol. 2010, Issue. 206,

    Stapleton, Karyn and Wilson, John 2009. Discourse and dissonance: Making sense of socio-political change in Northern Ireland. Journal of Pragmatics, Vol. 41, Issue. 7, p. 1358.

    Bröer, Christian 2008. Private trouble, policy issue people's noise annoyance and policy discourse. Critical Policy Studies, Vol. 2, Issue. 2, p. 93.

    Wilson, John and Stapleton, Karyn 2007. Handbook of Pragmatics.


The discourse of resistance: Social change and policing in Northern Ireland

  • DOI:
  • Published online: 01 May 2007

Modern social theory highlights the role of language in social change/reproduction, yet rarely draws on actual linguistic resources or theory. Equally, sociolinguistics situates linguistic practice within the social domain, but only weakly makes links to social theory. Using a linguistic analysis of policing discourses in Northern Ireland, this article considers how such analyses can both inform and be informed by broader social theories. Policing is a contentious issue for nationalists, and despite recent reforms, many continue to regard the (new) police force with suspicion. Data from nationalist women in Belfast are used to explore the thematic frameworks and interactional/pragmatic strategies (pragmatic blocking) through which the speakers jointly produce a “discourse of resistance,” effectively blocking acceptance of the new service. The analysis is discussed in relation to theories of social change (with particular reference to Bourdieu's habitus). Considered are implications for sociolinguistics, social theory, and policing policy in Northern Ireland.This article derives from an Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC)-funded study (Award No. RES 00-22-0257).

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Language in Society
  • ISSN: 0047-4045
  • EISSN: 1469-8013
  • URL: /core/journals/language-in-society
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