Speech Acts and Hegemony in Discourse

Donald Trump's Tweets on the US-Iranian Nuclear Crisis




hegemony, illocutionary force, political discourse, Speech Act Theory, Trump’s tweets


Language users may use the standardized forms of speech acts as a strategy to achieve their own purposes, like political agendas. This is the objective of the present study, which focuses on the manipulation of speech acts in Donald Trump’s tweets on the US-Iranian crisis. More specifically, the current research paper sheds light on hegemony in political discourse and how it is embedded in assertive, commissive, directive, declarative and expressive speech acts. The tweets of Donald Trump, delivered between January 2017 and December 2019 and related to the US-Iranian crisis, will be analyzed within the framework of Speech Act Theory. The results of the current research show that Trump’s use of speech acts demystifies his hegemonic tone towards Iranian leaders. His power is mediated explicitly via directives and commissives, while it is exerted implicitly via expressives and assertives. His use of direct and indirect speech acts reveals Trump’s ambivalence and willingness to solve the US-Iranian nuclear crisis via both hegemony and diplomacy.  


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Author Biography

Thouraya Zheni, Manouba University,Tunisia

Dr. Thouraya Zheni is a Senior English Teacher at the Higher Institute of Accounting and Enterprise Management (ISCAE), Manouba University, Tunisia. Her research interests are mainly Pragmatics, Cognitive Linguistics, Critical Discourse Analysis (CDA) and Political Discourse. ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0003-3434-244X. Web of Science researcher ID: AAP-6336-2020.



How to Cite

Zheni, T. (2020). Speech Acts and Hegemony in Discourse: Donald Trump’s Tweets on the US-Iranian Nuclear Crisis. International Journal of Language and Literary Studies, 2(4), 215–235. https://doi.org/10.36892/ijlls.v2i4.476