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PhD Research School in Linguistics and Philology

Christian Manga

Polyphony in political discourse in Cameroon (La polyphonie dans le discours politique camerounais)

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The present work falls within the framework of discourse analysis. It moves from different observations made in the field of political discourse in general and in that of the Cameroonian political context in particular. The latter is characterized by two realities. The first one is that of the lifelessness of a dispersed opposition and the second is the resulting overpower of the regime. This situation of serious disequilibrium in the political action appears through the speeches of the main leader. Very conscious of his supremacy, he makes speeches in which traces of the opposition and their actions scarcely appear. Therefore, his speeches are mid-way between self-reference and polyphony. This research project builds on Bakhtine’s premises that every speech is based on otherness and seeks to analyze the polyphonic configuration of the speeches of the powers that be in Cameroon. Inspired by the Scandinavian theory of linguistic polyphony known as “ScaPoLine” (Henning Nolke et al., 2004), we will try to reveal other points of view within a sample of more than eighty (80) speeches of the President of the Republic and identify whom they refer to in the political scene in a bid to clearly state the different political protagonists in Cameroon since the return of multiparty system.