Arab World English Journal (AWEJ) Volume 13. Number2.  June 2022                                        Pp. 214-238

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An Analytic Study of the Evaluative Resources Used in American and Iraqi Opinion

Ishraq Abdulredha Alsandeli
Department of English, College of Languages
University of Baghdad, Baghdad, Iraq
Corresponding Author:

Rihab Abduljaleel Saeed Alattar
Department of English, College of Languages*
University of Baghdad, Baghdad, Iraq


Received:1/12/2022                                     Accepted: 3/24/2022                          Published:6/24/2022


This study investigates how American and Iraqi writers utilize the evaluative resources in newspaper opinion articles (henceforth, op-eds) from a critical discourse analysis perspective. It explores how American and Iraqi writers of op-ed pieces draw on the evaluative resources to establish their attitudes, create rhetorical effects, and serve their ideologies in influencing readers’ and addressees’ feelings and attitudes towards certain subject matters. This study hopes to enhance the critical thinking of readers of an increasingly important journalistic genre in democratic societies. The main questions this study raises are: On which categories of attitude markers do American and Iraqi op-ed writers base their evaluation? Which types of referencing external voices are the most recurrent? And why? The researcher adopts Martin and White’s (2005) appraisal theory and Van Dijk’s (2006) ideology perspective to achieve the study’s goals. After applying qualitative and quantitative analysis methods, the study finds that the significant ideological strategy of positive-self presentation and negative other-presentation significantly motivates the evaluative resources used by American and Iraqi op-ed writers. Both American and Iraqi op-ed writers use similar evaluative techniques in terms of distribution. The analysis also finds that there are variations concerning the overall frequencies and the frequencies of the sub-types of evaluative resources under examination across the corpus.
Keywords: Attitude markers, critical discourse analysis, evaluation, external voices, opinion articles

Cite as: Alsandeli, I.A., &  Alattar, R. A.S. (2022). An Analytic Study of the Evaluative Resources Used in American and Iraqi Opinion Columns. Arab World English Journal, 13 (2) 214-238.


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Received: 1/12/2022  
Accepted: 3/24/2022
Published: 6/24/2022

Ishraq Abdulredha Alsandeli got her BA degree in the English language at the College of Languages, the University of Baghdad in 2011. She had worked as a translator for the independent All Iraq News Agency (AIN) and is currently a teacher at a preparatory school in Baghdad. This research paper is a partial requirement for obtaining an MA degree from the Department of English of the same college and university. ORCID:


Dr. Rihab Abduljaleel Saeed Alattar received her Ph.D. from the College of Arts, University of Baghdad in 2006 with a dissertation on Gricean maxims of conversational implicature. Her fields of research are pragmatics and stylistics. She is an assistant professor at the department of English/College of Languages and has been teaching pragmatics, semantics, and many other MA courses since 2008. ORCID: