The Pragmatics of Political Accusations in Obama-Romney First Presidential Debate 2012


  • فريد حميد الهنداوي University of Babylon -College of Education for Human Sciences
  • وليد رضا حمودي الجويد University of Babylon -College of Education for Human Sciences



political accusation, attack, defense, data, warrant, claim, speech act, presidential debate


This study tackles political accusation in the context of Obama-Romney first presidential debate 2012. The participants in the political discourse exploit various pragmatic strategies in order to take over their opponents' arguments. Political accusation, here, is dealt with as a process rather than a product for the operationality of analyzing the data under study. It is political on the principal ground that it tackles political issues. Accordingly, this study sets itself the task of investigating how political accusation takes place in the aforementioned context. It aims, first, at identifying the pragmatic structure of political accusation, second, detecting the pragmatic strategies used by the presidential candidates in the data under scrutiny and, third, tracing whether a candidate's pragmatic strategies are different or not from the other candidate's pragmatic strategies as far as political accusation is concerned. The hypotheses intended to be tested by this study are: first, the pragmatic structure of political accusation is composed of two stages: attack stage and defense stage, second, both stages are realized via various pragmatic strategies and, third, the use of pragmatic strategies are different from one candidate to another. For achieving the aims of the study and testing its hypotheses, an eclectic model is developed on the basis of various other models which are offered by other studies. This model is used to pragmatically analyze the data of the study. Besides, a statistic analysis by means of the percentage equation is conducted to quantitatively support the findings of the pragmatic analysis. The analyses of the data under study reveal that the hypotheses adopted are verified.


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How to Cite

الهنداوي فريد, and الجويد وليد. “The Pragmatics of Political Accusations in Obama-Romney First Presidential Debate 2012”. Kufa Journal of Arts, vol. 1, no. 36, Aug. 2021, pp. 9-30, doi:10.36317/kaj/2018/v1.i36.595.

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