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Date of Award

2009

Document Type

Thesis - Pacific Access Restricted

Degree Name

Master of Arts (M.A.)

Department

College of the Pacific

First Advisor

Marlin Bates

First Committee Member

Qingwen Dong

Second Committee Member

Paul Turpin

Third Committee Member

Gene Bigler

Abstract

This study is a rhetorical analysis of the protests that occurred along the international leg of the 2008 Beijing Olympic torch relay. This study aimed to identify the rhetorical strategies employed by the agitators that were demonstrated along the torch relay. There were two agitative groups: The movement and the counter-movement. The movement began at the start of the torch relay and the counter-movement began demonstrating one week later. There were a number of protest groups in the movement including human rights activists, media rights activists, and environmentalists. However, there was only one distinct group in the counter-movement, pro-China supporters. The movement agitated the Chinese government and their nation's government. To establish the rhetorical strategies and tactics utilized by the two agitative groups and the control groups, this study analyzed the artifact through the model of the rhetoric of agitation and control created by Bowers, Ochs, and Jensen (1993) and symbolic interaction. This study . found that the Chinese government (the control) created the counter-movement to suppress and provide a counter-persuasion to the movement. To achieve this rhetorical strategy the control fully co-opted the rhetorical strategies of the movement. This study also, found that the governments to which the agitators belonged to completely denied the demands of the agitators in order to maintain healthy relations with China.

Pages

125

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