Title: Legitimation Strategies to Enchant the New American “War On Terror”: Implications in Ben Affleck’s Testimony


Vol. 10(1), 2022, pp. 39-61.



Author: Hana Riani

About the author: Hana Riani holds a PhD in American Culture Studies. Her study foci are primarily: Neo-Imperialism, Soft Power Politics, Gender and Celebrity Studies, and Political Discourse. Her research interests and academic fields are also rooted in Critical Discourse Analysis especially modern rhetoric. Hana Riani teaches American Culture, History and Politics. She participated in several international conferences pertaining to her research interests.




Citation (APA style): Riani, H. (2022). Legitimation Strategies to Enchant the New American “War On Terror”: Implications in Ben Affleck’s Testimony. Studies in Linguistics, Culture, and FLT, 10(1), 39-61.




Abstract: This article accounts for the process of legitimization as a mere instrument of control in society where symbolic power is manifested. By conducting a critical discourse analysis in combination with frameworks for analyzing legitimating devices in discourse as developed by Theo van Leeuwen (2007) and Antonio Reyes (2011), this study scrutinizes the legitimation strategies used in Ben Affleck’s speech before the American House Foreign Affairs Committee on Congo crisis (2011). The paper also investigates the linguistic devices leaned on by this social actor to advance particular political ends. The results from the qualitative analysis have shown that this activist establishes links with his audience outlining common values firmly grounded on US history, cultural tradition and political ideologies. His reasoning constructs specific understandings of US involvement in the new “war on terror” legitimized through (1) hypothetical future, (2) rationality, (3) voices of expertise and (4) altruism.

Keywords: legitimation strategies, Ben Affleck, political discourse, ideology



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