Once upon a time there was a nation: Narrative conceptualization analysis. The concept of 'nation' in the discourse of Israeli Likud Party leaders

Shaul Shenhav*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

24 Scopus citations

Abstract

In this article, I claim that some of the miscommunications between political and academic discourse are caused by differences in constructing key concepts. I suggest that, whereas academic discourse tends to use 'stable concepts' in which the 'signifier' of the concept links constantly with a timeless 'signified', politicians tend to use 'narrative concepts', which are special signs in which the 'signifier' links with a 'signified' story. In the first part of the article, I present a methodology called 'narrative conceptualization analysis' that can help in tracing the narrativity within concepts. The second part implements the methodology by analyzing the concept 'nation' in speeches given by leaders of the Israeli center-right 'Likud' party. Studying the narrative meanings of the concept 'nation' can show significant changes in national perceptions by the Likud leaders over the years. Moreover, it can provide new insights regarding the role of the 'nation' as a key concept in the political discourse.

Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)81-104
Number of pages24
JournalDiscourse and Society
Volume15
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 2004

Keywords

  • Concept
  • Discourse
  • Israel
  • Likud Party
  • Narrative
  • Nationalism
  • Political science
  • Politics
  • Sign

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