Ambiguity as Discursive Strategy: A Critical Analysis of Pakistani Political League’s Selected Discourse Regarding Covid-19

Muhammad A. Khan, Sumra M. J. Satti


This study unearths the ambiguities found in the discourseof prominent Pakistani political league during the outbreak of the pandemic covid-19 from the perspective of critical discourse analysis (CDA). CDA is an approach to the analysis of discourse which considers language as a social practice and takes particular interest in the ways in which ideologies and power relations are expressed through language (Fairclough, 2015). This paper presents a reflection to unveil the discursive strategies which are being used by the major Pakistanipolitical parties’ leaders as they did not come up with any plan of action pertaining to covid-19 yet. These statements are merely based on criticism only for the sake of criticism without any systematic planning and logical way out to get rid of this critical situation.  This analysis is guided by the framework of Fairclough’s model of CDA (2015) which consists of three inter-related processes of analysis tied to three inter-related dimensions of discourse. This paper highlights the ideological perspective of Prime minister Imran Khan, opposition leaders i.e., PML-N leader ShahbazShareef, Chairman Pakistan People’s Party, Bilawal Bhutto Zardari and MolanaFazal-u-Rehman. This study found out that the statements which are given by the major political parties on different political forums are full of vague ideas and uncertainty about Coronavirus outbreak which is, in a way,an evidence regarding their failure to understand and tackle the dire situation.


Discursive strategy; Ambiguity; Critical discourse analysis; Pakistani political league; Covid-19

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Copyright (c) 2021 Muhammad Akbar Khan, Sumra M. J. Satti

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Journal of South Asian Studies
ISSN: 2307-4000 (Online), 2308-7846 (Print)
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