Learning in fear: A critical discourse analysis of newspaper headlines on school attacks in Nigeria
This paper examines, from the lens of critical discourse, the spate of attacks on educational facilities in Nigeria as reported in newspaper headlines. The main concern of this paper is that attacks on educational facilities across Nigeria are direct assault on the tenets of western education and an indirect attack on the future of the nation. This study is qualitative in nature and the data was generated from the online versions of the chosen newspapers. The period considered in this study was January 2020 to May 2021. The reason for choosing this timeframe was to ascertain if the interregnum occasioned by the Covid-19 provided a cessation period for attacks on educational facilities, namely schools, school administrators and students. The theory used for the explication of the headlines is critical discourse analysis (CDA) as propounded by Norman Fairclough (1989). The findings of the paper reveal that newspaper headlines provide an avenue for mirroring subtle power dynamics, ideologies and social identities. The paper concludes that attacks on education are hegemonic in texture and a calculated attempt to frustrate the development of education for religious, political and pecuniary purposes.
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