Negations and negativity as linguistic devices in policy discourse of intercultural cities
Lähdesmäki, T., Heynderickx, P., Wagener, A., & Dieltjens, S. (2015). Negations and negativity as linguistic devices in policy discourse of intercultural cities. Journal of Multicultural Discourses, 10 (3), 332-348. doi:10.1080/17447143.2015.1067220
Published inJournal of Multicultural Discourses
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Intercultural cities – a joint initiative launched in 2008 by the European Commission and the Council of Europe – aims to develop a model supporting intercultural integration within diversified urban communities. This article examines, using methods of applied linguistics and discourse analysis, how intercultural urban policy is linguistically produced in the initiative. The examination indicates that the intercultural urban policy in the initiative is ‘negative politics’: the policy rhetoric commonly outlines the content of interculturalism by describing what is not included in it and what the policy is not about. The language used in the intercultural urban policy rhetoric presents the coexistence of distinct cultures as a problematic and conflicting issue. This contradicts the fundamental principle of the policy, which aims for co-operative and positive encountering between people in an urban environment.