Discursive Construction of the War on Terrorism in Nigeria


African Humanities Program Postdoctoral Fellowships




Terrorism - carried out in Nigeria, mainly, by the most dreaded terrorist sect called Boko Haram - has been widely reported by the media. Recent studies on media reports on terrorism have paid scant attention to the reportage of the war on terrorism. This study, therefore, examines the linguistic and discourse strategies deployed by e-newspaper reporters in framing the news on the war on Boko Haram in order to establish the role of the media in the war. For data, headline stories are purposively sampled from four e-newspapers from the northern (Daily Trust and Leadership Nigeria) and southern (The Punch and The Nation) parts of Nigeria, published from 2011 – 2014. The analyses are guided by a combination of the theory of critical discourse analysis, systemic functional linguistics, conceptual metaphor and system networks on the representation of social actors. The mediated reports of the war on Boko Haram insurgency orientate Nigerians.