Religion in the Media: A Linguistic Analysis

This ground-breaking book takes an interdisciplinary approach to language, religion and media using an audience-response study. In this book, the author investigates how the three Abrahamic faiths – Christianity, Judaism and Islam – are represented in mainstream British media and analyses how members of each religious group and those with no religion receive those representations. Employing Critical Discourse Analysis, Al-Azami considers the way the media use their power of language to influence the audience’s perceptions of the three religions through newspaper articles, television documentaries and television dramas. Chapter 3 presents the results of an original investigation into the responses of members of the three religious groups and those with no religion when exposed to those same media materials. The author applies the encoding/decoding model and also considers people’s views in face-to-face interactions compared to comments on online newspapers. Comprehensive in its analysis, this book will be of interest to students of Linguistics, Media Studies, Religious Studies, and Journalism.

Thoughtful and thought-provoking, based upon original research, Religion in the Media: A Linguistic Analysis offers fresh insights into how Islam, Judaism and Christianity are represented and then interpreted through a range of media in the UK. In this fascinating study Salman Al-Azami breaks new ground, demonstrating the value of linguistic and audience analysis for understanding the evolving and complex relationship between Religion and Media.

Jolyon Mitchell,
Professor, University of Edinburgh, UK