Messaging in the aftermath of a tragedy

Bilal Zaiter
2 min readFeb 22, 2023

The benefits of discourse analysis of political leaders

Photo by Volodymyr Hryshchenko

In the aftermath of a tragedy, political leaders are often quick to respond with messages of condolence and calls to action. These messages are not only intended to provide comfort to the victims and their families, but also to shape public opinion and influence policy decisions. By examining the language, structure, and underlying ideologies of political messages, we can gain valuable insights into the motives and intentions of our leaders.

In addition to gaining a better understanding of the motives and intentions of political leaders, a discourse analysis of their messages in the aftermath of a tragedy can also help to:

  1. Uncover the underlying ideologies and beliefs that shape their political messaging, which can help to predict future policy decisions.
  2. Expose the use of fallacious arguments or manipulative language to sway public opinion, which can help to promote critical thinking and media literacy.
  3. Identify the power dynamics at play in the discourse, such as who is being targeted by the messaging and who is being excluded or marginalized.
  4. Highlight any contradictions or inconsistencies in their messaging, which can reveal gaps or weaknesses in their political platform.
  5. Provide insights into how the political messaging is received by different segments of the population, which can inform strategies for building public support or opposition to policy decisions.

Here is a brief case study from a school killing in France that may give a better clue.

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