This paper analyses two EU booklets (French version, pdf format) – a guide and a monograph – addressed to European citizens as far as knowledge and functioning of EU institutions are concerned. The attention is focused on paratextual features adopted by authors to allow laypeople to access general information about EU institutions and services, in particular illustrations and their captions. A Peircean classification of the hypoicons in images, diagrams and metaphors is the starting point for identifying and examining the illustrations of the two documents. Captions are studied in their mutual relation to the illustrations according to a distinction based on their status. The analysis of the illustrations, where images are the most represented category, shows that EU booklets present an informative function coupled with a promotional one, as they try to highlight the best side of the EU. This is mostly true for images, which are all real and often generic pictures which need captions to be correctly understood and linked to the main text. Diagrams, on the contrary, are rare in the monograph but frequently used in the guide as a way to clearly explain and visualize technical information. As a consequence, captions, which are their titles, are necessary to link their content to the main text. Finally, no metaphor appears in the two booklets probably because of the general and institutional/official approach of the EU towards the citizens.

Analyse des publications de l’Union européenne à visée vulgarisatrice : le cas des illustrations

Silletti, Alida Maria
2018

Abstract

This paper analyses two EU booklets (French version, pdf format) – a guide and a monograph – addressed to European citizens as far as knowledge and functioning of EU institutions are concerned. The attention is focused on paratextual features adopted by authors to allow laypeople to access general information about EU institutions and services, in particular illustrations and their captions. A Peircean classification of the hypoicons in images, diagrams and metaphors is the starting point for identifying and examining the illustrations of the two documents. Captions are studied in their mutual relation to the illustrations according to a distinction based on their status. The analysis of the illustrations, where images are the most represented category, shows that EU booklets present an informative function coupled with a promotional one, as they try to highlight the best side of the EU. This is mostly true for images, which are all real and often generic pictures which need captions to be correctly understood and linked to the main text. Diagrams, on the contrary, are rare in the monograph but frequently used in the guide as a way to clearly explain and visualize technical information. As a consequence, captions, which are their titles, are necessary to link their content to the main text. Finally, no metaphor appears in the two booklets probably because of the general and institutional/official approach of the EU towards the citizens.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11586/227641
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