Identity, Political Adverts, and Media Identity Representation in American Presidential Campaigns
This paper explores how identity is represented in political communication, especially focusing on US Presidential campaign adverts produced for TV and the Internet. Basing on a diachronic analysis spreading over the last sixty years, the paper outlines how personal and collective identities converge in the process of identification with the leader and how the integration of visual and linguistic genres empowers the political message. Biographical adverts, in particular, with their emphasis on traditional values, recall the basic ideals on which the nation is grounded. The public’s perception of the politicians’ public image is thus guided by politicians themselves who, through positive and negative adverts, contribute to shape their opponents’ public image as well as their own, in a virtual mass media battle.
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