Palestine in the British press: a postcolonial critical discourse analysis

Article English OPEN
Sanz Sabido, R. (2015)
  • Publisher: Intellect
  • Subject: PN4699

This article examines the representations of the Israeli Palestinian conflict in the British press, starting from the premise that media representations in Britain should be analysed in relation to Britain’s role as a postcolonial power. Focusing on Britain’s colonial and postcolonial connection to this conflict, this study is based on the findings of a Postcolonial Critical Discourse Analysis of four British national newspapers (the Guardian, or Manchester Guardian; The Times; the Daily Herald, or the Sun; and the Daily Mirror) at four different points during the history of the conflict. The findings indicate that the classification of Palestine, Palestinians, Israel, Israelis, Jews, Zionists and Arabs as agents of political violence evolved over time, as violent acts and agents were perceived differently according to the dominant political discourse during each period. The contextualization of the conflict also provides insights into how the British press constructed its various ideological positions in relation to this conflict, and the extent to which the British Mandate remained visible in the later coverage of the conflict. The postcolonial approach adopted in this study indicates that the generalized lack of references to the historical facts that underpin Britain’s role in the development of the conflict represents an attempt to move away from the historical responsibilities derived from colonial encounters. This framework therefore helps to restore the largely neglected historical connection of the British Mandate to its proper place in the analysis of these mediated events.
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