A Discursive Construction of Terrorism and Terrorists in EBC's Documentary Film "Terrorism in Ethiopia"

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Addis Ababa University


As media have a vital role to play when talking about the representation, framing and reporting of terrorism; this study aims at analyzing the discursive construction of terrorism and terrorists in the documentary film "Terrorism in Ethiopia." Attempts were made to analyze the representation and portrayal of terrorism and terrorists, to examine rhetorical strategies used to support the arguments advanced and to look into how structural factors have played a role in the discursive construction of terrorism and terrorist in the documentary film. In line with the theme of the study, related literatures have been viewed and the representation and framing theoretical frameworks were deployed. A qualitative research approach with discourse analysis as a method has been employed. The result of the analysis reveals that with reference to the systematic content analysis of the documentary film, the producers of the documentary film were parties that have a direct hand on the issue raised; and the themes presented were in line with the issue raised and seemed befitting. With regard to the representation and framing of terrorism and terrorists, the producers have depicted terrorism as 'an evil deed' that does not differentiate race, age, religion, etc. However, some of the claims made by the producers of the documentary were overstretched and were ii contextualized so as to fit their objectives. Opposition on how the government exercises its power and disagreements on the practice of the country's legal system were portrayed as terrorism acts. In addition, the rhetorical strategies used to support the arguments forwarded have played their role in a way that allows the readers to identify themselves with the victims and validate and accept the arguments presented by the interviewees and the producers. Based on the findings of the study, some recommendations have been forwarded.



Terrorism and Terrorists