NT&T is starting up a research seminar series during which selected scholars present their views on one of our discussion topics. The first speaker to kick off this new initiative is Andrea Rocci from the University of Lugano. Andrea will give a talk on 13 June 2008 in Ghent. Drop me a line if you would like to attend. Here is Andrea’s abstract.
Three perspectives on the analysis of predictions in financial news: semantics, argumentation, and the genre system.
Financial news is as much about what could happen tomorrow than about what happened yesterday in the markets. From a pragmatic viewpoint financial news concerning public companies primarily addresses an audience of (potential) investors whose demand for information is largely oriented towards supporting their future investment decisions. Financial news support and influence these decision processes both directly and indirectly.
Acts of prediction in the form of economic forecasts and of other “forward looking statements” play a central role in this journalistic genre like in other genres of economic discourse. In this talk I will present the three pronged strategy of analysis of this pivotal speech act adopted in an ongoing research project. The strategy aims to bring together three research traditions that very rarely (if ever!) talk to each other: formal semantics, normative pragmatic models of argumentation, and genre studies focusing on the notion of “system of genres”. The talk will try to enucleate some of methodological implications of the approach with respect to the role of linguistic meanings and context in the practice of discourse analysis.