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The discursive construction of national identity by the newspapers in North Cyprus

By Sanem Sahin


The research investigates the discursive construction of a Turkish Cypriot national\ud identity by the newspapers in North Cyprus. The aim is to discover the representation\ud and reconstruction processes of national identity within the press and examine the\ud various practices employed to mobilise readers around certain national imaginings.\ud Therefore, as well as examining the changing concepts of Turkish Cypriot identity\ud throughout history, it focuses on how these concepts have been moulded through the\ud Turkish Cypriot media. Highlighting historical, political, economic and cultural factors,\ud which contributed to shaping national identities, the study locates the Turkish Cypriot\ud media within these relations to offer an understanding of the media environment in\ud which the news texts are produced.\ud Using Critical Discourse Analysis, in particular the discourse-historical approach, the\ud research analyses ongoing transformations in the definition of self and 'other' and the\ud linguistic construction and reproduction of national identity in the news discourses.\ud Focusing on three significant events that occupied the public and media agenda within\ud the last decade, the news discourses are studied based on their content, strategies used in\ud the production of national identity and the linguistic means employed in the process.\ud With this, the nationalist tendencies embedded in news discourses as well as\ud discriminatory and exclusive practices are sought out.\ud Finally, the study discusses the findings such as the conceptualisation of Turkish Cypriot\ud identity showed variations in time, the newspapers did not diverge from the universe of\ud official discourse and rarely challenged the nationalist discourses. Yet, the newspapers\ud had differences mainly based on their stance to the Cyprus issue and their definition of\ud national interest and identity. The conclusions that arise from the research, one of which\ud is a suggestion for further research, are debated in the study

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