Produce a detailed and linguistically well- informed analysis of the editor’s letter from Elle magazine (July 2012) which focuses on the process of ‘synthetic personalisation By harpur91 Produce a detailed and linguistically well-informed analysis of the editor’s letter from Elle magazine Ouly 2012) which focuses on the process of ‘synthetic personalisation What I am going to look like, in relevance to the above question, is the process of synthetic personalisation in the magazine, ELLE (July 2012).
I am therefore going to nclude work produced by Norman Fairclough and his ideas on this process, but also including lexical features, conversationalisation; in which can be spilt up into numerous features combined under this discourse. Firstly, however, I am going to have to understand the terms In order to produce a detailed and linguistically well- Informed analysis of the editors letter from said magazine. The first area I am going to focus on is Synthetic personalisation’.
Fairclough defined this concept as being “a compensatory tendency to give the impression of treating each of the people handled’ en masse as an individual” (Fairclough 2001 :52) this therefore it begins to become a process of addressing the mass audience, whilst speaking to them as they were Individuals. Thus, showing off an element of conversationalisatlon, not only that, but It begins to show Ideas of Informality with the language used throughout articles etc___ However when looking deeper into the Issue. we begin to see that this is only a cover-up, an attempt to give the impression that they are speaking on an informal, one-to-one basis.
This therefore shows elements of manipulation; giving us, as the udience a false sense of intimacy, or fake intimacy (Hoggart 1957) with the writer. Furthermore this begins to signify the phoney sense of belonging we have with the text given, we are not seen as being an individual but as a collective group of people. Falrclough would therefore describe and label the concepts spoken above as conversationallsation. As we begin to progress, we begin to see a clear difference In both private and public outputs. “People do not expect to be spoken down to, lectured or got at’.
They expect to be spoken to in a familiar, friendly and informal anner as they were equals on the the same footing as the speaker” (Scannell, 1996:24) not only does this relate to radio and television, but it could be incorporated into the magazine and Journalist Industry. People reading Journalistic products such as ELLE magazine; expect to be treated In a certain way, a way In which Is Informal, conversational In order to gain that Illusion of Individualisation, rather than them addressing the audience as a whole.
Conversationalisation is a “term used by Fairclough (1994:260) who describes it as ‘a restructuring of the boundary between ublic and private orders of discourse’ Fairclough also notes that it involves the use of language that is normally associated with conversation” (Baker 2011 :22) because of tnls, we can Degln to see tnls development Detween tne relatlonsnlp 0T tne speaker and reader therefore creating this emotional connection, rather than it Just being informational.
Furthermore “it could be argued that in capitalist societies, conversationalisation is often used as a way of securing customer loyalty by helping them create the appearance of a personal relationship” (Baker 2011 :23) this therefore inks back to the idea that companies/ in this case ELLE magazine writers have the ability to address a mass audience, but making them feel like they are being spoken to individually. And when it builds this relationship with the reader, they are able to exploit them through subtle, inclusive language.
The editor’s letter from ELLE magazine, shows off similar ideas of this informality of conversationalisation, we as the audience, when reading this text, may see it as being something you would sit amongst friends and chat about, thus giving that informal conversation (e. . “l wanted to pick the star of the show, the person you all want to date – sorry I mean meet) this shows that Joke like attitude women may converse in when with their girlfriends. Thus showing, in essence a form of popular opinion, allowing the readers to feel some sort of connection.
Not only this, but specific language used throughout texts of this nature, i. e. fashion magazines, show a clear representation of that conversation amongst friends. And like said previously, the writer begins to address you as an individual, rather than a collective group. This therefore is a clear representation of language; that they are being supportive friends therefore helping another friend out in need. Lexical features are also used throughout this text in order to reinforce the idea of the writer personally addressing their ideas to an individual.
For example, pronouns such as; l, you and we are used throughout this text, to make the reader feel connected to this historical fashion debut. An example of this would be; “this is the first time in ELLE’s 27-year history we have put a man on the cover. I didn’t take the decision lightly- after all, this is a LUXARY fashion magazine for women” not only is it addressing all women, whom have some sort of interest in fashion, but it begins to show off an element that, you as the reader had some sort of insight in picking and being a part of this event.
Not only this, but the editor begins to apologise to those, whom thought R-Patz (Robert Pattinson) would grace their historical cover. “l feel I have to apologise to the R-Patz fans who hoped our first-ever cover man would be him (and told me repeatedly on Facebook and Twitter! ) Again, with the synthetic personalisation aspect, we begin to see that there is a clear formality of the writer-reader element. The fact they apologised, signifies the element of intimacy, thus allowing those to thought he would grace the cover, some clarification into why they chose David Beckham instead.
When analysing the editor’s letter in more detail, we begin to see the use of pronouns and how the language and context it is used in conforms to the idea of togetherness. The pronoun; we, is used during the letter, this therefore shows the representation of a hared identity of the audience, not only that but it becomes clear that the language used is in a specific way in which creates the idea of a togetherness for the audience, that they feel a part of this.
The pronouns used do not Just simply and directly conform to the friendly stereotype between writer-reader but, they are also used in terms of exclusively, where there used amongst the editorial team therefore contributes to” setting up the producer as a team; the anonymous group voice is a Trlen01y gossip In tne orlentatlon Deneatn tn 5/6) tnls tnereTore hows that the editorial team act like a family, in which create the illusion of a wider- social informal friend-like association between writer-reader.
For example “l knew I had made the right decision as I noted the giddiness among the editorial team before the shoot” this shows the clear representation of the pronouns used in order create the family-like background for the reader, it signifies a family into which collectively decides on what is right. And because of this, we as the audience/reader feel like this is addressing us on a personal/individual level. Not only does language ncorporate the idea of directly addressing an individual rather than a collective group, but the use of parenthesis can also create the idea of a quiet word between friends, therefore backing up this element.
Within the editor’s letter from ELLE “we have done two covers for the newsstand issue (so you can go out and buy the alternative, too) and a very SPECIAL illustrated collectors’ cover for our loyal and much-valued subscribers (weVe also made a video for your eyes only, subscribers” with this, it represents ideas that if you are a loyal subscriber you can get extra ontent etc.. which therefore could symbolise ideas of your much closer friends. Therefore you are able to talk more and gain a more insightful understanding of the content. However this could be represented in a completely different light.
The fact that this may mean the exploitation of individuals, in which creating the idea that you can get more from this issue if you become a subscriber, therefore reinforces the capitalist society. Overall when looking at what has been said, I can conclude that synthetic personalisation has played a massive part in the print industry, focusing ore on the fashion magazine ELLE, the fact we are able to see and understand the linguistic features used in order to create this illusion of a friendship connection between writer and reader and how, they have used their power in order to manipulate the audience.
And because of this, the audience finds it more helpful knowing that they have some sort of “friend” to lend a helping hand. Not only that, but because the private and public have started to merge, we are seeing elements of public events being used for private consumption. But people are able to interpret hings different when there in private, than they could if they were in public.
But overall, there are so many elements in ELLE magazine which represent the linguistic attributes in exploiting an audience through language and grammer.
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