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A Pragma Stylistic Analysis of Aggression in Hillary Clinton’s Speech on Trump

Taif Hatam Shardaghly
University of Babylon/ College of Education for Human Sciences/ Department of English, Iraq.
Keywords: Pragma-Stylistics, Aggression, Impoliteness Theory, Tropes, Clinton’s Speech. ,


Language plays a pivotal role in human daily life due to its omnipresence. Human language is considered a conventional discipline that relies on the use of words according to complex rules. This paper examines the concept of aggression from a pragma-stylistic perspective. The objectives of this study are to identify the types of aggression employed by Clinton in her speeches, to illustrate the impoliteness strategies predominantly utilized by Clinton to achieve her aims, and to reveal the pragma-rhetorical tropes primarily indicated in her speeches. The study hypothesizes that Clinton employs indirect verbal passive aggression in her speeches, predominantly uses negative impoliteness strategies, and frequently indicates metaphor as the major rhetorical trope. The findings of the study confirm that Clinton employs indirect verbal passive aggression, predominantly uses negative impoliteness strategies, and primarily indicates overstatement as the major rhetorical trope in her aggressive speeches. The research involves a pragma-stylistic analysis of Clinton's speeches to identify rhetorical tropes, signals of aggression, and impoliteness strategies. The study acknowledges certain limitations, particularly the subjectivity inherent in pragma-stylistic analysis, which can introduce interpretative biases. Despite these limitations, this study offers significant insights into how public officials use language to convey aggression and influence public discourse.