Sofia University St. Kliment Ohridski
Abstract: The aim of this article is to highlight the defining traits of political rhetoric, presidential and state-political, in the events of protests and civil dissatisfaction in Bulgaria in 2020. The methodology includes both rhetorical and discursive analysis. Speeches of representatives of state institutions have been selected for this research and more precisely – of the Prime Minister and the President. The main hypothesis is that in cases of extreme opposition during growing civil dissatisfaction, political figures use a diversity of rhetorical techniques depending on their personal characteristics. The political vocabulary varies from specific terminology to slang and colloquialism. Their political argumentation aims to prove their own thesis with a diversity of arguments while demonstrating conviction and faith; to reject the opponent’s thesis and to prove their arguments wrong. The analysis concludes that there is strong contrast on personal and institutional levels. The polarisation in opinions is strong and fluctuates thus not being able to define a clear winner out of the crisis. The speaker often does not achieve persuasion of the opponent. The speakers aim to influence different social groups in Bulgaria while the protests and civil dissatisfaction were at their highest.
Key words: arguments, argumentation, political rhetoric, presidential rhetoric, state-political discourse, protests.
Rhetoric and Communications Journal, issue 49, October 2021