A contrastive analysis of keywords in newspaper articles on the “Kyoto Protocol”

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In 1997, an international environmental agreement was negotiated in Kyoto. It became famous as the Kyoto Protocol. Using corpus-linguistics tools, this chapter analyses the treatment of the controversial “Kyoto Protocol” in two national newspapers: the Italian La Repubblica and the American The New York Times. As a preliminary study, I compute the keywords for the articles about Kyoto, and then group the keywords into semantic fields to study the main specific groups of meaning to which Kyoto is related. I then focus on the words denoting ‘disaster’ and ‘alarm’. To conclude, I consider some positive keywords studying the concordance lines in order to describe their associated semantic prosody. The analysis will show how, despite some similarities in the lexical usage, the meaning conveyed by the two dailies is quite different.


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