Hashtag as a Linguocognitive Unit of Spanish Political Discourse

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Abstract


The article presents an analysis of the discursive features of the hashtags functioning in the current Spanish political discourse which are retrieved from Spanish government, ministries and bodies web publications dedicated to combating coronavirus infection. The purpose of the research is to understand and treat hashtags as a discursive unit in terms of theoretical linguistics, discourse theory, cognitive science and pragmalinguistics. The paper reveals significant linguo-cognitive parameters of the hashtags functioning in Spanish political communication and determines the impact of their verbal and pragmatic influence as a tool for structuring the political agenda in the interests of the sender and manipulative means influencing the consciousness and behavior of the addressee. The interdisciplinary approach is applied together with a set of systemic linguistic research methods - cognitive, pragmalinguistic, comparative, semantic, contextual and discourse analysis. The article clarifies the status of hashtags as an independent category of discourse, in other words, a unit of meaningful information that seamlessly conveys the designed content in the Internet communication, which includes political discourse. In accordance with the functional criterion, the following taxonomic classification of hashtags is substantiated: hashtags-prototypes of a situation or event, hashtags-concepts, hashtags-metaphors, hashtags-imperatives and hashtags-performatives. Key cognitive-pragmatic and linguistic characteristics of hashtags include: metatext structure, semiotic polycode, hypertextuality, interactive essence, intentionality, manipulative potential, simplified syntax, frequent use of performative and imperative verbs to intensify a call to action, emotionality, empathy, use of a language game mechanism to facilitate memorization of a key message, repetitions, rhythm.


About the authors

Marina V. Larionova

Moscow State Institute of International Relations (MGIMO-University) Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation

Author for correspondence.
Email: larionova.m@list.ru
ORCID iD: 0000-0001-6466-7363
76, Vernadsky ave., Moscow, Russian Federation, 119454

Ph.D. in Philology, Assistant-Professor, Associate Professor of the Department of Spanish Language

Anastasia V. Demkina

The Embassy of the Russian Federation in the Argentine Republic

Email: a.v.dyomkina@yandex.ru
ORCID iD: 0000-0002-3233-8503
1741, Rodriguez Peña, Buenos Aires, Argentine Republic, C1021ABK

Ph.D. in Philology, Attaché of the Embassy of the Russian Federation in the Argentine Republic

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