Social semiotics, ideologies and identities in pop culture discourse

Course Information
TitleΚοινωνική σημειωτική, ιδεολογίες και ταυτότητες στον λόγο της μαζικής κουλτούρας / Social semiotics, ideologies and identities in pop culture discourse
Interdepartmental ProgrammeSemiotics, Culture and Communication
Collaborating SchoolsFrench Language and Literature
Italian Language and Literature
Journalism and Mass Communications
Cycle / Level2nd / Postgraduate
Teaching PeriodWinter/Spring
Course ID600015001

Programme of Study: Semiotics, Culture and Communication

Registered students: 20
OrientationAttendance TypeSemesterYearECTS
KORMOSElective CoursesWinter/Spring-7.5

Class Information
Academic Year2020 – 2021
Class PeriodSpring
Faculty Instructors
Weekly Hours3
Class ID
Course Type 2011-2015
Specific Foundation / Core
Mode of Delivery
  • Face to face
Digital Course Content
Language of Instruction
  • Greek (Instruction, Examination)
Required Courses
  • ΥΜ-1 Semiotic and Cultural Theories
General Prerequisites
The course deals with the construction of identities in pop culture discourse in the light of socio-semiotic theories. In particular, departing from a constructionist perspective, identities are viewed as dynamic and fluid entities that are realized and reconstructed in discourse. In this context, speakers are considered to actively shape their social reality, taking into account the social constraints and communicative orientations each time they pose / are posed to them. As interaction is considered to be the 'canvas' against which multiple identities are displayed and clash among the participants, we will focus on the analysis of fictional interaction, drawing on examples from cinema and television (television series, TV commercials). The social identities under study will be social class, gender, age and ethnicity, while all the indexical processes / semiotic systems (language and visuals) which are involved in the construction of identities in the (multimodal) fictional discourse will be considered. As pop culture constructs multiple versions of social reality in the institutional framework in which it is shaped, special emphasis will be placed on the ideological role of the fictional representations under study to reproduce and to subvert the hegemonic identities of gender, class, age and ethnicity.
Learning Outcomes
Upon successful completion of the course, students will be able to: • understand the basic concepts related to the social function of discourse • perceive the active role of discourse in the construction of social identities • use the sociosemiotic research methodologies to determine the ideological role of pop culture discourse in the construction of social identities
General Competences
  • Apply knowledge in practice
  • Make decisions
  • Work autonomously
  • Work in teams
  • Work in an interdisciplinary team
  • Appreciate diversity and multiculturality
  • Demonstrate social, professional and ethical commitment and sensitivity to gender issues
  • Be critical and self-critical
  • Advance free, creative and causative thinking
Course Content (Syllabus)
• Discourse and identity: Essentialist and constructionist approaches • Language/ semiosis as a symbol of social identity - Dimensions of linguistic variation and multimodality • the interaction as a 'canvas' against which multiple identities are displayed and clash among the participants - Methodology of (fictional) interactional analysis and multi-modality • Pop culture discourse and ideology • Discourse and social class identities (applications to television and film) • Discourse and gender identities (applications to television and film) • Discourse and age identities (applications to television and film) • Discourse and ethnic/ national identities (applications to television and film)
discourse, pop culture, ideology, identities, gender, age, ethnicity, social class, fiction
Educational Material Types
  • Notes
  • Slide presentations
  • Video lectures
  • Multimedia
Use of Information and Communication Technologies
Use of ICT
  • Use of ICT in Course Teaching
  • Use of ICT in Communication with Students
Use of Information and Communication Technologies in teaching the course: Projector Using ICT in communicating with students: Using email and elearning
Course Organization
Reading Assigment50
Written assigments75
Student Assessment
Written assignments Oral presentation
Student Assessment methods
  • Written Assignment (Summative)
  • Performance / Staging (Formative)
Additional bibliography for study
Androutsopoulos, J. (2010). The study of language and space in media discourse. In P. Auer & J.E. Schmidt (Eds.), Language and Space: An International Handbook of Linguistic Variation. Volume I: Theory and Methods. Berlin, New York: de Gruyter, 740-758. Androutsopoulos, J. (2014). Mediatization and sociolinguistic change. Key concepts, research traditions, open issues. In J. Androutsopoulos (ed.), Mediatization and sociolinguistic change. Berlin: Mouton de Gruyter, pp. 3-48. Archakis, A., Lampropoulou, S., Tsakona, V. & Tsami, V. (2014). Linguistic varieties in style: Humorous representations in Greek mass culture texts. Discourse, Context & Media, 3, 46–55 Αρχάκης, Α. & Κονδύλη, Μ. (2011). Εισαγωγή σε Ζητήματα Κοινωνιογλωσσολογίας. Αθήνα: Νήσος. Αρχάκης, Α. & Τσάκωνα, Β. 2011. Ταυτότητες, Αφηγήσεις και Γλωσσική Εκπαίδευση. Αθήνα: Εκδόσεις Πατάκη. Benwell, B. & Stokoe, E. (2006). Discourse and Identity. Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press. Bucholtz, M. & Hall, K. (2005). Identity and interaction: A sociocultural linguistic approach. Discourse Studies, 7, 584-614. Coupland, N. (2007). Style: Language Variation and Identity. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. De Fina, A. (2003) Identity in Narrative. Amsterdam: John Benjamins. Fairclough, N. (2003). Analyzing Discourse: Textual Analysis for Social Research. London: Routledge. Γεωργαλίδου, Μ. Σηφιανού, M. & Β. Τσάκωνα (επιμ.) Ανάλυση Λόγου. Θεωρία και Εφαρμογές. Αθήνα: Νήσος. Georgakopoulou, A. (2000). On the sociolinguistics of popular films: Funny characters, funny voices. Journal of Modern Greek Studies, 18(1), 119-133. Holmes, J. (2016[1992]). Εισαγωγή στην Κοινωνιογλωσσολογία. Αθήνα: Εκδόσεις Πατάκη. Kress G and van Leeuwen T (2013) Reading Images: The Grammar of Visual Design (3rd ed.). London: Routledge. Lazar M (2007) Feminist Critical Discourse Analysis: Articulating a Feminist Discourse Praxis. Critical Discourse Studies 4(2): 141-164. Παυλίδου, Θ.-Σ. (2006) (επιμ.). Γλώσσα, Γένος, Φύλο (2η έκδοση). Θεσσαλονίκη: Ινστιτούτο Νεοελληνικών Σπουδών-Ίδρυμα Μανόλη Τριανταφυλλίδη. Στάμου Α.Γ. (2012). Αναπαραστάσεις της κοινωνιογλωσσικής πραγματικότητας στα κείμενα μαζικής κουλτούρας: Αναλυτικό πλαίσιο για την ανάπτυξη της κριτικής γλωσσικής επίγνωσης. Γλωσσολογία/Glossologia 20: 19-38. Στάμου Α.Γ. & Δημοπούλου Α.Δ. (2015). Κοινωνιογλωσσικές αναπαραστάσεις της κατασκευής του φύλου στον τηλεοπτικό λόγο: Η περίπτωση της σειράς Εργαζόμενη Γυναίκα. Γλωσσολογία/Glossologia 23: 23-44. Στάμου Α.Γ., Πολίτης Π., Αρχάκης Α. (2016) (επιμ.). Γλωσσική Ποικιλότητα και Κριτικοί Γραμματισμοί στον Λόγο της Μαζικής Κουλτούρας: Εκπαιδευτικές Προτάσεις για το Γλωσσικό Μάθημα. Καβάλα: Εκδόσεις Σαϊτα. Saltidou T.P. & Stamou A.G. (2018). “Cool children” and “super seniors” cross into youth language: Humorous constructions of youthfulness in Greek family sitcoms. In The Dynamics of Interactional Humor: Creating and negotiating humor in everyday encounters, V. Tsakona & J. Chovanec (eds). Amsterdam: John Benjamins, 181-204. Stamou, A.G. (2011). Speech style and the construction of social division: Evidence from Greek television. Language & Communication, 31(4), 329-344. Stamou, A.G. (2013). Adopting a critical discourse analytical approach to the mediation of sociolinguistic reality in mass culture: The case of youth language in advertising. Critical Studies in Media Communication, 30(4), 327–346 Stamou, A.G. (2014). A literature review on the mediation of sociolinguistic style in television and cinematic fiction: Sustaining the ideology of authenticity. Language & Literature 23(2): 118-140. Stamou A.G. (2018). Synthesizing critical discourse analysis with language ideologies: The example of fictional discourse. Discourse, Context & Media 23: 80-89. Stamou A.G. (2018). Sociolinguistics of fiction. Discourse, Context & Media 23: 1-5. Stamou A.G. (2018). Studying the interactional construction of identities in Critical Discourse Studies: A proposed analytical framework. Discourse & Society 29(5): 568-589. Stamou A.G. & Christou S. (2017). Sociolinguistic representations of the military in Greek comedy films: Laughing at the army. Pragmatics & Society 8(1): 1-25. Stamou, A.G., Maroniti, K. & Dinas, K.D. (2012). Representing “traditional” and “progressive” women in Greek television: The role of “feminine”/ “masculine” speech styles in the mediation of gender identity construction. Women’s Studies International Forum, 35(1), 38-52. Σαλτίδου, Ρ. & Στάμου, Α.Γ. (2016). «Φούρνος, bakery...και sex shop»: Η «γλώσσα των νέων» ως υφολογικός πόρος παιδιών και εφήβων και η κατασκευή της νεανικότητας στον τηλεοπτικό μυθοπλαστικό λόγο. Πρακτικά 36ης Ετήσιας Συνάντησης του Τομέα Γλωσσολογίας του Τμήματος Φιλολογίας ΑΠΘ. Θεσσαλονίκη: Ίδρυμα Μανόλη Τριανταφυλλίδη, 381-394. Σαλτίδου, Θ. & Στάμου, Α.Γ. (2017). "Κάν’ το όπως οι νέοι!': Τα νεανικά ιδιώματα ως υφολογικοί πόροι μεσηλίκων και ηλικιωμένων και η κατασκευή της νεανικότητας στον τηλεοπτικό μυθοπλαστικό λόγο. Ζ. Γαβριηλίδου κ.ά. (επιμ.), Πρακτικά Επετειακού Συνεδρίου ΤΕΦ ΔΠΘ Ταυτότητες: Γλώσσα και Λογοτεχνία. Καβάλα: Εκδόσεις Σαϊτα, 276-295.
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