A study that examines the facticity of media discourse in environmental articles from Eastern and Western newspapers.
Texts in newspapers have two purposes: first, they provide a description, and second, they depict that description as true, false, certain, or uncertain. This study investigates the description of climate change in the print media and examines how language is used by newspapers to establish facticity of the information about climate change in the newspaper texts. This study uses Potter’s (1996) fact construction theory as a theoretical framework and Stibbe’s (2015) facticity model as an analytical framework to analyse the data. The study used a mixed-methods approach. First, 15 articles from three newspapers about climate change from seven countries in the eastern and western worlds were gathered over a five-year period, from 2017 to 2021, using a judgement sample tool. Second, the lexical categories (nouns, verbs, and adverbs) were extracted from the corpus using the Baker (2006) model of concordance with the help of AntConc corpus tool. The results demonstrate that, with a difference of almost 21,000 words, lexical categories are more frequently used in western newspaper corpus data than in eastern data. The study concludes that the description of climate change in Western articles was based on fact, using strong model verbs, adverbs, and nouns. It is expected that this study will spark interest in the use of lexical categories to assess the authenticity of speeches and even books.
Keywords: Facticity, fact construction, climate change, ecosystem, media discourse and mother earth.