Diatexts of media dilemmas: The rhetorical construction of euthanasia

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In the post-modern era the global conscience has to deal with various dilemmas, which are made more complex by media interaction. These issues mostly pertain to the bioethical sphere of human experience, i.e. the discursive sphere linked to the necessity to overcome any interpretative routine of marked separation between ‘public’ and ‘private’. A specific effect of such an enunciative claim can be seen in the social debate on euthanasia recently hosted by the media since through subtle argumentative strategies it focuses on different interpretative repertoires of the dignity of human life. The present paper aims to discuss the results of a qualitative study, the aim of which is to investigate certain segments of the “dialogue about euthanasia”, collected from the Italian media (press, television, internet). Diatextual analysis has been adopted as a methodological tool to highlight the recurrence of specific rhetorical assets of both pro and contra positions.


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