A Stylistics Analysis of Some Selected Speeches of Shehu Shagari

Published: SEPTEMBER 2021


Msuega Ahar, Ogbene  U. Onaji & Myom Orkeghen

About Author(s):

Department of Languages and Linguistics

Benue State University, Makurdi

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This paper hinges on the stylistics analysis of five selected speeches made by President Shehu Shagari between 1982 and 1983 at different occasions during his regime. Some of these selected speeches focused on search for peace, economic development, technological advancement, social integration, among others. The researchers have used the Speech Act Theory which looks at the role of utterances in relation to the behaviour of speaker-hearer in interpersonal communication as a template for the analysis of the selected speeches. The secondary source of data collection has been used, and it has been analyzed using interpretative, evaluative and analytical approaches to unravel the linguistics style of the speaker. The researchers observed that President Shehu Shagari manipulated language as a tool for effective administration. The President employed dynamic linguistics skills in addressing the audience at varying occasions. Language was simply constructed but persuasively used to build gravity and compelling force to convince the masses. The speeches are characterised with for grounding, repetition, cohesion and coherent features. The study concluded that President Shehu Shagari is seen as a leader with a creative ability to use language dynamically and skilfully in administration to convince, compel and command followership to his credit. The researchers however, recommend that these speeches should be further analyzed from the morphorsemantics perspective.

Keywords: Foregrounding, Language, Speeches, Style, Stylistic