Politics of Hegemony and Denial in the Rhetoric of Language and Education Policy in Nepal: A critical discourse analysis of policy documents and government sponsored textbooks (1960--2009)

Phanindra Kumar Upadhyaya, University of Texas at El Paso

Abstract

My dissertation analyses the power dynamics of policy documents and government sponsored text-books in Nepal since the 1960s making use of critical applied discourse analysis as its theoretical lens. It looks into the rhetoric of language policies and planning in Nepal and shows how such rhetoric has shaped the overall linguistic, ethno-linguistic, ethno-religious and educational scenario, both overtly and covertly. Drawing on Antonio Gramsci’s “notion of hegemony” and Teun A. van Dijk’s “theory of denial,” I have shown that there are groups and individuals in societies that try to keep language under control for the promotion of their political, social, economic, personal and cultural ideologies. This control, overtly or covertly, is further perpetuated through education policies and the government sponsored textbooks that emerge. I have, through critical discourse analysis of such texts, revealed how language in all these documents is used to create group membership (us/them) and to demonstrate the difference through inclusion or exclusion, to determine loyalty and/or patriotism, and to classify people based on various socio-economic and socio-cultural factors. My analyses further authenticates the notion that language, rather than being an open and free system, is manipulated by those in power with the support of linguists and educationalists to impose, colonize, and create a distance between the us and them, resulting in the existence of a kind of push and pull between language ideology and language practice. ^

Subject Area

Education, Policy|Political Science, Public Administration|Language, Rhetoric and Composition

Recommended Citation

Upadhyaya, Phanindra Kumar, "Politics of Hegemony and Denial in the Rhetoric of Language and Education Policy in Nepal: A critical discourse analysis of policy documents and government sponsored textbooks (1960--2009)" (2010). ETD Collection for University of Texas, El Paso. AAI3433509.
http://digitalcommons.utep.edu/dissertations/AAI3433509

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