A Pragmatics Analysis of Language Use in Selected Nigerian Newspaper Headlines on Banditry Reportage


    The paper examines the analysis of language use in Nigerian Newspapers on banditry Reportage. A Speech Act Analysis of headlines in The Guardian and The Punch newspaper reports on banditry are considered with a view to finding out the speech acts that characterize the headlines. The speech act presents and documents locutionary, illocutionary and perlocutionary acts that convey the intention of speakers in banditry speeches. In an attempt to carry out the analysis, the study randomly collected 16 headlines on banditry from the Punch newspaper and the Guardian newspaper respectively. These headlines were analyzed to reveal their speech act import. The study adopted a qualitative descriptive research method. The speech act theory as modified by Searle (1969) serves as the theoretical framework of analysis for the study. The findings reveal that three of the five speech acts modified are found in the headlines reported in the selected newspaper headlines but the assertive dominates the occurrence of the speech acts. In conclusion, headlines reported concerning banditry may serve as weapons of negotiation, dialogue, intimidation, blackmail, incitement and coercion and thus create an atmosphere of fear and anxiety within the country. Based on this, the paper recommends that language users or communicators on either side of the contention must think before they speak, such speech should be devoid of rage, emotion, and irrationality, but must reflect calm, reality and humility.

    Keywords: Use of Language, Newspapers, Headlines, Banditry, Reportage 

    DOI: 10.36349/zamijoh.2023.v02i02.002

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    author/Saidu Yahaya Ojoo, (PhD) & Almu Gafai Ibrahim

    journal/Zamfara IJOH Vol. 2, Issue 2