An Analysis of Pragmatic Sarcasm in Political Debate

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Wael Moniom Kadhim
Chetan Mewada


This study investigates the pragmatic use of sarcasm in the Brexit discussions of British Prime Minister Boris Johnson. The choice of this subject is based on the presumption that sarcasm has become an important component of political discourse. The objectives of the study are to identify the most prevalent pragmatic structures for using sarcasm in political discussions, to ascertain whether or not using sarcasm in political debates constitutes an act of negativity, and to demonstrate whether or not there are distinctive patterns in the formulation of sarcasm. The following is hypothesized in light of the objectives established: Assuming that the speaker adheres to the CP, several speech acts materialize to produce sardonic statements. 2- Some of the recommended pragmatic sarcasm structures are heavily used in Boris' political debates. 3- Sarcasm is constantly used as a cutting verbal weapon in political debates and is always manufactured on purpose. Sarcasm reflects bad impacts. The data was gathered from political debates in which British Prime Minister Boris Johnson participated, and the sarcastic analysis model was based on the speech act model developed by Searle in 1969, the pragmatic structures of sarcasm model developed by Camp in 2012, and the classification of pragmatic functions of sarcasm developed by Attrado in 2001. The study comes to some notable conclusions, such as the fact that sarcasm can convey a variety of signals, including a negative attitude, and that particular sarcasm structures are employed more frequently than others.

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Kadhim, W. M., & Mewada, C. (2023). An Analysis of Pragmatic Sarcasm in Political Debate. Journal Educational Verkenning, 4(2), 1-9. Retrieved from


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