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Chapter 7. Breaking the fourth wall

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Abstract

This paper focuses on the American TV series version of <i>House of Cards</i>, paying specific attention to the second person pronoun used by the protagonist (Francis Underwood) in his address to the viewer, thus breaking the classical fourth wall. It both evinces the similarities of the use of the second person pronoun in literature and in the TV series and highlights the differences due to the specificity of the TV medium. It also points out the subtle manipulation of the viewer generated by the versatile nature and various pragmatic functions of &#8220;you&#8221; in <i>House of Cards</i>. Leaning on psycho-cognitive research, it finally discusses the success of the series in assigning the viewer the place of the protagonist&#8217;s complicit partner.

References

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