Course: Discourse Analysis (3 credit hours)
Professors: Dr. Mimoza Rista-Dema and Dr. Ermal Hasimja
Office Hours: Tues. 18:00 – 19:00, Wed. 16:00 – 18:00, Thurs. 14:00 – 16:00, Fri. 14:00 – 15:00 E-mail:;

Course Description

This course surveys elements of discourse analysis, including context, style, register, speech functions, politeness, gender, stereotypes, discourse patterns, cross-cultural communication, sociocultural knowledge and conversational implicature, certain ethnic conversational styles, intertextuality, and the language of politicians. The course goal is to provide students will helpful discourse analysis skills so that they can extrapolate and apply them in their specific fields of study.

Course Objectives

Upon completion of this course, students should be able to:

  1. Recognize discourse analysis as a research method used in a variety of disciplines
  2. Understand the relation between discourse and the world
  3. Explain the connection between discourse and language as a human faculty
  4. Detect ways in which specific discourses are purposefully designed
  5. Describe and explain the intertextuality of discourse
  6. Analyze various mediums of oral, written and visual discourse
  7. Examine and interpret ways in which intentions shape discourse

Required Text

Course packet with various readings from the following books:

Jaworski, Adam & Coupland, Nikolas (2006). The Discourse Reader. Routledge.
Johnstone, Barbara (2008). Discourse Analysis. Blackwell Publishing.
Holmes, Janet (2006). Introduction to Sociolinguistics. Longman
Wittgenstein, Ludwig (2009). Philosophical Investigations. Wiley-Blackwell; 4 edition. Bourdieu, Pierre (2009), Language and Symbolic Power, Harvard University Press.

Foucault, Michel (1998), The will to knowledge. Penguin Books.

Course Requirements

Attendance & Participation (5% attendance + 5% participation): Please see attendance chart below. Participation extends beyond mere attendance. Expect your instructor to keep track of how often you contribute to discussion.

Assignments (2 x 15%): There will be two take-home assignments for this course. These assignments, which should always be typed, should reflect your understandings of the course readings (book chapters and additional articles up to that point of time in the semester) and your ability to integrate these understandings into a coherent whole.

Leading Class Discussion (10%): Each student will be responsible for preparing a power point overview of one of the readings of the syllabus, as well as of 8 to 10 questions for leading class discussion

Midterm (20%) & Final Exam (30%): Test format will include essay questions covering readings, handouts and class discussion content.

Attendance & Punctuality: I will keep track of your attendance and punctuality every hour of class. The grades for attendance will be as follows (please note that it refers to hours missed and not days):

Hours Missed

Grade Points

























Criteria for Student Evaluation

Attendance & Participation




Leading Class Discussion




Final Exam





Grading Scale

96-100 A

90-95 A-

87-89 B+

83-86 B

80-82 B-

77-79 C+

73-76 C

70-72 C-

67-69 D+

63-66 D

60-62 D-

0-59 F

Technology Expectations: Assignments should be word-processed and submitted in class as hard copy. All written assignments must adhere to APA format: A4 size, Times New Roman font, 12 pt, double spaced with standard margins and page numbers.

Late Assignments: Deadlines are critical. Therefore, assignments should be submitted on their due date. In the event of illness or emergency, contact your instructor IN ADVANCE to determine whether special arrangements are possible.

Academic Dishonesty/Turnitin: When requested by the instructor, assignments should be submitted to UNYT does not tolerate academic dishonesty. Read the UNYT Student Honor Code for a

more detailed description of plagiarism and cheating. The assignments submitted to must not receive an overall plagiarism mark of over 20% and no single source may be over 6%.

Learning Difficulties: If you feel that you have special learning difficulties, please, make an appointment with Ms. Anxhela Gramo. Ms. Gramo is trained to help students with learning difficulties. She has offered to provide this service to our students, just as it is offered in all American universities.

Course schedule (tentative; subject to change)

Week 1. Introduction to discourse analysis: What is discourse analysis? Some uses of discourse analysis. Facets of discourse analysis (Johnstone Chapter 1); Style, context, and register (Holmes, Chapter 10).

Week 2. Speech functions, politeness, and cross-cultural communication (Holmes, Chapter 11). Gender, politeness and stereotypes (Holmes, Chapter 12).

Week 3. Language, cognition, and culture (Holmes, Chapter 13). Attitudes and applications (Holmes, Chapter 14).

Week 4. Logic and conversation – H. P. Grice (Jaworski & Coupland, Chapter 3). Assignment # 1 due

Week 5. Nietzsche: Language and concepts. Derrida: The metaphysical presuppositions of language. Wittgenstein: Language games.

Week 6. Sociocultural knowledge in conversational inference – John Gumperz (Jaworski & Coupland, Chapter 3).

Week 7. Mid-Term Exam. Women, men, and politeness: Agreeable and disagreeable responses – Janet Holmes (Jaworski & Coupland, Chapter 23).

Week 8. Global capitalism and critical awareness of language – Norman Fairclough (Jaworski & Coupland, Chapter 9).

Week 9. On face-work: An analysis of ritual elements in social interaction – Erving Goffman (Jaworski & Coupland, Chapter 21).

Week 10. Politeness: Some universals in language usage – Brown and Levinson (Jaworski & Coupland, Chapter 22).

Week 11. New York Jewish conversational style – Deborah Tannen (Jaworski & Coupland, Chapter 31). Assignment # 2 due

Week 12. Language and symbolic power – Pierre Bourdieu (Jaworski & Coupland, Chapter 32).

Week 13. Discourse and power – Michel Foucault
Week 14. The incitement to discourse – Michel Foucault (Jaworski & Coupland, Chapter 33).

Week 15. Discourse and the denial of racism – Teun A. Van Dijk (Jaworski & Coupland, Chapter 35).

Final Exam



Instructor: Dr. Mimoza Rista-Dema and Dr. Ermal Hasimja