Socio-Cultural Practice in Migrant Discourse: A Socio-Cognitive Analysis of Multimodal Representation of Afghan Migrants Living in Pakistan
This study provides details on the social aspects of the visual discourse under study. The study using van Leeuwen’s Social Actor and Action Model elaborated on the visual-textual social actors and actions that surfaced after the analysis of visual and linguistic narrative structures. In the context of the current study, it generates a contradictory narrative of Afghan refugees. The process of using language is persuasion. The audience has a preconceived notion about a particular genre, which shapes their expectations. Through a narrative, persuasive and rhetorical technique, language use in selected data sets is saturated in sociocultural settings. As a result, acts, people, migratory concerns, and powerful arguments in favor of policy reconsideration dominate the dialogue. The narrative technique elicits emotional responses from viewers to shape their viewpoint, whereas the rhetorical approach uses statistical data to convey logical conclusions. Nevertheless, language has been employed in the most significant way to help viewers identify with the narrative and concerns that correspond with their ideas and experiences. The discourse offers stories of migration-related atrocities that are a re-presentation of reality, but not the “genuine” thing. Linguistically, representational strategies such as inclusion, passivation (receivers of violence/help), activation (battlers against everyday living problems), personalization (humanizing of social actors), specific examples, identification, determination, nomination (use of names), categorization/identification (about cultural identity), and association bring audiences’ attention to social problems that migrants encounter. The study also shed light on the nature of the order of discourse and explained the socio-political hidden ideology behind representing Afghan migration through visuals. Lastly, the revealed ideology proposed reconsideration of Afghan migration policies implemented in Pakistan.
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