Vice-Presidential Candidates, Language Frames, and Functions Across Two Continental Divides: An Analysis of Acceptance Speeches

Nana Kwame Osei Fordjour, Etse Sikanku


Given calls for more inclusion of women in the political space and political studies, we analyze the nomination acceptance speeches of vice-presidential candidates, from two countries with different sociocultural and economic backgrounds (Ghana and the United States). Our analysis builds on two well-established theories for studying political discourses. The authors uncover in both speeches, four similar and salient language frames synonymous to women in the political space. We advance the argument that the similarities in the language frames employed by both candidates can be attributed to their quests to wrestle power from incumbent regimes and concern about being ostracized. Our findings on their frames indicate that, negligible of the context or position, the feminine language frames hold true in the speeches of women in politics. It also reinforces the wide applicability of the functional theory of political campaign discourse and supports the argument that women go negative in their political discourse contrary to societal expectations.


women, nomination speech, vice-presidential candidates, framing, functional theory of political campaign discourse

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