Humanities & Social Sciences Communications (Oct 2021)

Media events, speech events and propagandistic techniques of legitimation: a multimodal analysis of the Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis’ public addresses on the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic

  • Stamatis Poulakidakos

Journal volume & issue
Vol. 8, no. 1
pp. 1 – 9


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Abstract The increased information need after the outburst of the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic has led to the enhanced role of public addresses and press conferences that can broadcast important information simultaneously to a large number of people through a number of different media outlets (TV, radio, internet). Thus, government leaders worldwide have opted for the frequent broadcast of public addresses, reviving the rationale of media events as a way to disseminate their messages concerning the pandemic as widely as possible. The current paper focuses on the Greek case, scrutinizing the public addresses of the Greek PM Kyriakos Mitsotakis in terms of both structural and content characteristics. Through the use of multimodal analysis, we figure out the visual and linguistic characteristics in K. Mitsotakis public addresses. At the same time, we setup a research framework for the qualitative and quantitative examination of similar public addresses in various countries, by combining the theories of media events, propaganda, and linguistic techniques of political legitimization. Our main findings suggest that K. Mitsotakis in his public addresses has made use of direct visual and verbal connections to aspects of “Greekness” in a nation-centric rationale. He relies predominantly on the evocation of positive sentiments and rationalization (as a means of legitimization), in order to achieve political benefits by incorporating the management of the pandemic into the Greek government’s nationalist agenda.