Health Discourse in Media: the Language of Breast Cancer Prevention

Anna Stebletsova & Valeria Enkova, Russia, IS CLEaR2016-330;      The paper focuses on social media discourse covering a major health-related issue - breast cancer prevention.  Medical topics seem to have gone far beyond a professional domain and become part of a multimodal discourse which appears to comprise medical, educational and social purposes. The objective of the research is  to identify certain discourse strategies and language means which social media involves for a stronger impact on the audience. The material has included verbal and visual data (texts, graphs, videos) collected from the official websites of British and American breast cancer foundations. In the framework of the pragmatic and discourse analysis the authors have indicated three discourse strategies: to inform, to urge for action, to inform + to urge for action involved in breast cancer discourse. Consequently, these strategies have been studied from the language perspective to identify their lexical and syntactical manifestation. The authors make a conclusion that particular vocabulary and grammar, pragmatic and stylistic means can produce a stronger communicative impact on the target audience and transform a conventional health discourse into a multimodal one.

 Key words:  multimodal health discourse, discourse strategies, language means