Word as a Discourse: Evaluation of the Relationship between the Word and Historical Periods and Discourses

Document Type : Research Paper


1 M.A. Student of Linguistics, Allameh Tabataba’i University, Tehran, Iran.

2 Associate Professor of Linguistics, Allameh Tabataba’i University, Tehran, Iran.

3 Assistant Professor of Linguistics, Allameh Tabataba’i University, Tehran, Iran.


Based on Foucault's discourse analysis approach, this study examines participants' discourse perceptions of historical-political words and tries to find the answer to the question of how different historical-discourse formulations and their changing nature is expressed in words as a referent of discourse truth (constructed discourse) and reproduced and  recalled by words. In other words, how is the "word" itself a discourse that can be analyzed? This research was conducted in two stages and two questionnaires with 110 and 135 participants. The method of this research is qualitative-quantitative and based on description and analysis. The second questionnaire in 5 groups of questions evaluates the connection of the word with historical periods and discourses, the difference between the discourse of the word in each period, and the individual discourse of the participants. The data were analyzed qualitatively and quantitatively in the form of statistics and graphs. Quantitative analysis of data from 21 items by SPSS software confirmed a significant relationship between "words" and "historical periods and discourses". The results showed that some words, such as historical-political words, are to some extent formed in discourse and are tied to specific historical discourses. And reciprocally,  independently and disregarding any background and verbal context, they can represent and induce that discourse and reconstruct the components related to that discourse in the mind of the addressee. Thus, although the words have their own lexical meaning in the language, according to different contexts, conditions of occurrence, different minds, and finally different discourses, they show different perceptions, influences, and relative meanings and carry different discourses, and the concept  they have in the mind is a historical  one that has been formed in history. This study concludes that words reflect the reorientation of the discourse formulations and articulations of history and they alone can be studied in discourse analysis and ethnology.


Main Subjects

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Volume 12, Issue 1
July 2021
Pages 1-26
  • Receive Date: 23 February 2021
  • Revise Date: 21 June 2021
  • Accept Date: 11 July 2021
  • First Publish Date: 11 July 2021