MULTIPLE HEDGING IN THE POLITICAL INTERVIEW
Keywords:multiple hedges, non-factivity, political interview, pragmatics, critical discourse analysis
This paper deals with multiple hedges with non-factive verbs and phrases in political interviews in Serbian and English. Political interview, as a specific type of political discourse, is increasingly present in the media and is becoming the main form of communication between political actors and the public. This type of interview is both a source of information for the public and a means for conducting political campaigns. Since politicians are responsible to their voters for their every action and statement, they must choose carefully what to say and how to say it. One of the important characteristics of their discourse is the hedging of propositional content, because they sometimes cannot or do not want to give an explicit answer to delicate questions. In these cases, they use one or more hedges to make their statements acceptable to the public without compromising or committing themselves. Linguistic disciplines that deal with the analysis of all types of discourse, including political and media discourse, are pragmatics and critical discourse analysis, which represent the theoretical basis of this paper. Examining political interviews in English and Serbian, our goal has been to classify and describe multiple hedges used by politicians in conversations and determine their discursive functions, as well as to perform a contrastive analysis of the use of hedges in these two languages. The results have generally confirmed the initial hypotheses about the main functions of multiple hedges.