A Pragma-Rhetorical Study of Persuasion in American and Iraqi Billboards


  • Siham Alkawwaz University of Kufa
  • Maarif Altamimi Kufa university


The present study investigates pragmatic and rhetorical aspects of the advertising message to explore how persuasion takes place. It aims to identify and analyse the persuasive appeals, rhetorical devices, and speech acts the advertisers use in the headlines of some American and Iraqi billboards. For this purpose, an eclectic model has been adopted which consists of Searle’s (1969) speech acts theory, Lucas’s (2009) persuasive appeals, McQuarrie’s and Mick’s (1996) rhetorical devices, and Cook’s (2001) advertising context. The findings of the study showed that American and Iraqi billboards have a lot in common. The advertisers relied mainly upon the tropes of ellipsis and hyperbole in writing advertisements. Pathos appeal was employed as the basic tool to achieve persuasive impact on potential customers. Moreover, directives, representatives, and commissives were the main acts through which persuasion was realised.


Download data is not yet available.




How to Cite

Alkawwaz, S. ., & Altamimi, M. (2020). A Pragma-Rhetorical Study of Persuasion in American and Iraqi Billboards. Asiatic: IIUM Journal of English Language and Literature, 14(2), 89–111. Retrieved from https://journals.iium.edu.my/asiatic/index.php/ajell/article/view/2084