Poverty, Language, and Media in Latin America (PoLAMe)

Poverty, Language, and Media in Latin America (PoLAMe)

Collaborative project with several Latin American and Norwegian universities.

Until October 2015 CROP was partner in the "Poverty, Language and Media - The Cases of Argentina, Brazil, Colombia and Mexico" project that received funding from the Research Council of Norway's Latin America Programme.

The project was the result of a joint collaboration between CROP, the University of Bergen (Department of Foreign Languages-IF/UiB), Universidad de Antioquia, Universidad Nacional de Colombia, Universidad Federal de Integración Latinoamericana (UNILA), Universidad Nacional de Salta, Universidad Nacional de Tucumán, Universidad Nacional de San Juan, Instituto Tecnológico de Monterrey (ITESM), Universidad de Guadalajara, and Norwegian School of Economics (NHH).

The project, founded by the Research Council of Norway and administered by IF/UiB, gathers an international and multidisciplinary team of researchers to study the linguistic representations of poverty in Mexican, Argentinean, Colombian and Brazilian media.

The project is based on the understanding "that hegemonic views conveyed by mainstream or agenda setting media tend to naturalize poverty within the 'common sense' and, at the same time overlook causal interpretations or explanations of poverty production and reproduction". In order to test this hypothesis the researchers will combine established theories of poverty with linguistic corpus analysis.

The project seeks to uncover how language use reproduces ideologies and interests by imposing certain notions, conceptions and definitions of poverty. In order to arrive at such empirical findings, the language use must be considered in relation to past and current world views which have formed and continue to form the political landscape in the different countries.

The point of departure of the research is represented by glossaries of a large number of terms used in reference to poverty in both scholarly research and lay discourse. These glossaries were created by experts in poverty research and sponsored by CROP. When key words and concepts appear in a media text corpus, their meaning in context will be related to the definitions found in the glossaries.  

In order to ensure a rigorous approach to the analysis of linguistic phenomena in context partnerships with prominent researchers in the four countries has been established, representing linguistics, media studies, sociology, economics and political science.

Video interview with Dr. Gabriel Quiroz (Colombia)


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