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Caught Off Base or Scoring a Home Run?: Baseball Metaphors in US Political Discourse
Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of English.
2009 (English)Independent thesis Basic level (degree of Bachelor), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

As sports become more commercialized, and with an increasing coverage of sports events in media, baseball, and other major sports, are more easily accessed and expanding in popularity. This type of wider exposure has made sports games and their language known to almost every American. That, in turn, has led to an unprecedented pervasive use of sports terms and analogies in present-day American English.

This study investigates the frequency of baseball metaphors within US political discourse. Through the CSPAE (Corpus of Spoken Professional American English), White House press briefings were searched for occurrences of baseball metaphors. The metaphors searched for were selected from Sports Talk: A Dictionary of Sports Metaphors (P & R, 1989). The findings were cross-referenced with data from COCA (Corpus of Contemporary American English) in order to provide a point of comparison towards a corpus with a broader and more general discourse (language use). COCA was searched for the same expressions as those that were found in the CSPAE.

The results showed that there was a more pervasive use of baseball metaphors in White House press briefings than in AmE in general, as represented in COCA. This indicates that sports, specifically baseball, metaphors seem to be a persuasive way of using metaphors in political discourse.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2009. , 22 p.
Keyword [en]
Metaphor, Political Discourse, White House Press Briefings, American (US) English, Corpus, Sports, Baseball.
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-36927OAI: diva2:291186

Available from: 2010-02-10 Created: 2010-01-31 Last updated: 2010-02-10Bibliographically approved

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