Volume 18, Issue 2
  • ISSN 1569-2159
  • E-ISSN: 1569-9862
Buy:$35.00 + Taxes



This paper presents a discourse-mythological analysis of the rhetoric of a pioneering Pan-African and Ghana’s independence leader, Kwame Nkrumah, drawing on Ruth Wodak’s discourse-historical approach to critical discourse analysis. The thesis of the paper is that Nkrumah’s discourse, in its focus on the emancipation and unification of Africa, can be characterized as mythic, a discursive exhortation of Africa to demonstrate to the world that it can better govern itself than the colonizers. In this vein, the paper analyzes four discursive strategies employed by Nkrumah in the creation and projection of his mythology: the introduction or creation of new discourse events, presupposition and implication, involvement (the use of indexicals) and lexical structuring and reiteration. This study is, therefore, presented as a case study of mythic discourse within the domain of politics.


Article metrics loading...

Loading full text...

Full text loading...


  1. Barthes, Roland
    1972Mythologies, trans. A. Lavers. London: Paladin.
    [Google Scholar]
  2. Boticci, Chiara
    2007A Philosophy of Political Myth. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. 10.1017/CBO9780511498626
    https://doi.org/10.1017/CBO9780511498626 [Google Scholar]
  3. Flood, Christopher
    2002Political Myth. London: Routledge.
    [Google Scholar]
  4. Edelman, Murray
    1977Political Language. New York: Academic Press.
    [Google Scholar]
  5. Fairclough, Norman
    1989Language and Power. New York: Longman.
    [Google Scholar]
  6. 1992Discourse and Social Change. Cambridge: Polity.
    [Google Scholar]
  7. Flowerdew, John
    1997 “The Discourse of Colonial Withdrawal: A Case Study in the Creation of Mythic Discourse”. Discourse & Society8(4): 453–477. 10.1177/0957926597008004002
    https://doi.org/10.1177/0957926597008004002 [Google Scholar]
  8. Fowler, Roger, Hodge, Roger, Kress, Gunther, and Trew, Anthony
    1979Language and Control. London: Routledge & Paul Kegan.
    [Google Scholar]
  9. Gastil, John
    1992 “Undemocratic Discourse: A Review of Theory and Research on Political Discourse”. Discourse & Society3(4): 469–500. 10.1177/0957926592003004003
    https://doi.org/10.1177/0957926592003004003 [Google Scholar]
  10. Geis, Michael L.
    1987The Language of Politics. New York: Springer. 10.1007/978‑1‑4612‑4714‑2
    https://doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4612-4714-2 [Google Scholar]
  11. Halliday, Michael A. K.
    1994An Introduction to Functional Grammar. London: Edward Arnold.
    [Google Scholar]
  12. Kelsey, Darren
    2015Media, Myth and Terrorism: A Discourse-Mythological Analysis of the Blitz Spirit in British Newspaper Responses to the July 7th Bombings. London: Palgrave. 10.1057/9781137410696
    https://doi.org/10.1057/9781137410696 [Google Scholar]
  13. 2017Media and Affective Mythologies: Discourse, Archetypes and Ideology in Contemporary Politics. London: Palgrave. 10.1007/978‑3‑319‑60759‑7
    https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-60759-7 [Google Scholar]
  14. Lewis, William F.
    1987 “Telling America’s story: Narrative form and the Reagan Presidency”. Quarterly Journal of Speech73: 280–302. 10.1080/00335638709383809
    https://doi.org/10.1080/00335638709383809 [Google Scholar]
  15. Nujomah, Sam
    2013Statement by His Excellency Dr. Sam Nujoma, the Founding President of the Republic of Namibia and the Father of the Namibian Nation, on the Occasion of the African Youth and Intergenerational Forum during the 50th Anniversary of the OAU/AU. Retrieved fromwww.namibiaembassyusa.org/statement/statement-by-his- excellency-dr-sam-nujoma-the-founding-president-of-the-republic-ofonMay25.
    [Google Scholar]
  16. Van Dijk, Teun A.
    1993 “Principles of Critical Discourse Analysis”. Discourse & Society4(2): 249–283. 10.1177/0957926593004002006
    https://doi.org/10.1177/0957926593004002006 [Google Scholar]
  17. Wodak, Ruth
    1996Disorders of Discourse. New York: Longman.
    [Google Scholar]
  18. 2002 “The Discourse Historical Approach”. InMethods of Critical Discourse Analysis, ed. byRuth Wodak, and Michael Meyer, 63–69. London: Sage.
    [Google Scholar]

Data & Media loading...

This is a required field
Please enter a valid email address
Approval was successful
Invalid data
An Error Occurred
Approval was partially successful, following selected items could not be processed due to error