Moving in a Gyre: A Discourse Analysis of President Rouhani’s De Facto Inaugural Speech

Rahman Sahragard, Meisam Moghadam


The purpose of this study is to critically analyze the discourse of the de facto inaugural speech presented by president Rouhani while receiving his presidential percept from the leader, to seek the ideology beyond his speech and to detect the point that to which of discourses, reformists’ or principalists’, Rouhani’s discourse belong to. Based on Dijk’s socio-cognitive model of critical discourse analysis the selected corpus’ ideological and persuasive components are assessed. To this end and based on the model, the historical, political or social background of the election is discussed firstly. Then, the political groups and parties, specifically reformists and principalists, their ideologies and power relations are elaborated. Finally, based on the examination of all formal structure, lexical choice and syntactic structure, the presupposed and the implied notions are made explicit, to determine the ideology beyond the formal text. Comparing the extracted notions from the speech with the polarized viewpoints of two political parties, it was concluded that Rouhani tried to keep the golden middle path while presenting his ideas, trying to introduce himself a moderate person and base all his plans on moderation. His speech revealed the strategies to move in a gyre of ideas trying to avoid condemning any party or person of eminence in line to keep all parties in one line to make his move.

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