Identification and Visual Rhetoric in Modern Advertisement Theory

Abdullah S. Darwish


In this paper, I have tried to develop an analytical framework to account for the value and important use of visual rhetoric in modern advertisement theory through adopting Burke’s (1969) notion of identification. I have shown how identification in advertisements with visual images is created by such strategies as naming, framing, symbol use, perfection principle, negativity principle and social hierarchy notion. Initially, identification needs some visual deviation to establish its existence. This suggested analytical framework of identification here has been integrated with modern advertisement theory framework which has three main variables: attracting attention, arousing pleasure, and making the message long-lasting in the minds of the audience. Through applying these two frameworks, I attempt to show how modern advertisers mold their advertisements not only to persuade the target audience but also to create identification which leads to a long term consumerism relationship between the advertised product/service and the target audience. In all cases, a minimum degree of pre-established knowledge on the side of the audience is required to work out the covert relationship between the visual images and the advertised product/service in order to achieve identification and its consequential long term consumerism relationship.

DOI: 10.5901/ajis.2015.v4n3p11

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This work is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.

Academic Journal of Interdisciplinary Studies ISSN 2281 3993(Print) ISSN 2281-4612(Online)

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