Financial Times goes Discourse Analysis

Financial Times Deutschland turns its hand to metaphor analysis in today’s leading financial crisis story. Metaphors such as the finance-tsunami, the earthquakes that shake Wall Street or the meltdown of capitalism suggest that the crisis was caused be acts of nature; ‘the powers that be’. Or Josef Ackermann, the head of Deutsche Bank who earned more than €12 million worth of bonuses in 2007, plus natural powers.

Das Problem beginnt mit der Sprache: Da toben Stürme, ein Finanz-Tsunami sucht uns heim, ein Erdbeben erschüttert die Wall Street, wir erleben die Kernschmelze des Kapitalismus. Diese Metaphern, die ja auch von Journalisten stammen, liegen auf der Hand, um irgendwie zu erfassen, was da draußen los ist. Und doch suggerieren sie, zumal den Betroffenen, die sie aufgreifen, dass hier Naturgewalten und höhere Mächte am Werk sind. Nein, nicht wir Dilettanten haben mit Schrottpapieren gehandelt – ein Tsunami zerstört unsere Welt!

But no, says the FTD, these metaphors lead us astray. The crisis comes from us; from the deeper inner core of ourselves and our society. It comes from our greed and our lust from profit. From bankers to chipshop owners who only change the oil every three days to the consumer who shops around for the cheapest electronic goods – all are part of the problem, according to the FTD.

The story also links to a photo series of conspiracy theories on who caused the crisis. Number 5 is a version of their own theory: the devil and human greed. Number 8 has the best image. Of world governments who are preparing massive underground bunkers to use after the huge planetary catastophe which will flood much of the earth in 2012:


One Comment to “Financial Times goes Discourse Analysis”

  1. The ‘best’ image? That’s the cover for a hip-hop album.

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