Advanced

National Identity as a Political Battlefield. Conflicting Narratives of the 2004 American Presidential Election Campaign.

Lilja, Peter (2006)
Department of Political Science
Abstract
The official rhetoric of American Presidents is viewed by many non-Americans as somewhat ridiculous and unduly pompous and self-righteous.

Vanessa Beasley, on the other hand, has argued that the constant references to the superiority of the American nation in the rhetoric of its presidents have been required in order to keep the extremely diversified nation together.

Starting from a constructivist philosophy of science and using a narrative theory of identity construction, the aim of this thesis is to investigate the role of national identity in American politics and how it's leading politicians use and contributes to the construction of such an identity. It does so by analyzing the central speeches of the National Conventions of the... (More)
The official rhetoric of American Presidents is viewed by many non-Americans as somewhat ridiculous and unduly pompous and self-righteous.

Vanessa Beasley, on the other hand, has argued that the constant references to the superiority of the American nation in the rhetoric of its presidents have been required in order to keep the extremely diversified nation together.

Starting from a constructivist philosophy of science and using a narrative theory of identity construction, the aim of this thesis is to investigate the role of national identity in American politics and how it's leading politicians use and contributes to the construction of such an identity. It does so by analyzing the central speeches of the National Conventions of the 2004 Presidential election.

The result of the analysis is supportive of Beasley's conclusions and shows the importance of national identity in U.S. politics. Both parties use references to such an identity in order to defend or oppose different policy practices. The stories used to define how a true American is supposed to act are taken from the overall theme of the civil religion of America used by presidents since the foundation of the nation. These are then, in line with the narrative theory used, causally emplotted and selectively interpreted in order to suit the preferred policy practices of the narrator. (Less)
Please use this url to cite or link to this publication:
author
Lilja, Peter
supervisor
organization
year
type
H1 - Master's Degree (One Year)
subject
keywords
The United States, National Identity, Identity Construction, Narrative Theory, 2004 Presidential Election, Political and administrative sciences, Statsvetenskap, förvaltningskunskap
language
English
id
1328036
date added to LUP
2006-02-10
date last changed
2006-02-10
@misc{1328036,
  abstract     = {The official rhetoric of American Presidents is viewed by many non-Americans as somewhat ridiculous and unduly pompous and self-righteous.

Vanessa Beasley, on the other hand, has argued that the constant references to the superiority of the American nation in the rhetoric of its presidents have been required in order to keep the extremely diversified nation together.

Starting from a constructivist philosophy of science and using a narrative theory of identity construction, the aim of this thesis is to investigate the role of national identity in American politics and how it's leading politicians use and contributes to the construction of such an identity. It does so by analyzing the central speeches of the National Conventions of the 2004 Presidential election.

The result of the analysis is supportive of Beasley's conclusions and shows the importance of national identity in U.S. politics. Both parties use references to such an identity in order to defend or oppose different policy practices. The stories used to define how a true American is supposed to act are taken from the overall theme of the civil religion of America used by presidents since the foundation of the nation. These are then, in line with the narrative theory used, causally emplotted and selectively interpreted in order to suit the preferred policy practices of the narrator.},
  author       = {Lilja, Peter},
  keyword      = {The United States,National Identity,Identity Construction,Narrative Theory,2004 Presidential Election,Political and administrative sciences,Statsvetenskap, förvaltningskunskap},
  language     = {eng},
  note         = {Student Paper},
  title        = {National Identity as a Political Battlefield. Conflicting Narratives of the 2004 American Presidential Election Campaign.},
  year         = {2006},
}