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A Functional Approach to Political Advertising
Unformatted Document Text:  9 analysis of newspaper advertisements better contribute to understanding the function of political discourse in South Korea. The incumbent party candidate in Korea was Lee, Hoichang, and the challenger party candidate was Kim, Daejung. South Korea has established a two-party system; thus, minor party candidates were not included in the study. The coding unit of this study is theme. Advertisements were unitized into themes, or parts of the ad that addressed a coherent idea (Benoit, 1997; Benoit, Blaney, & Pier, 2000). Coding Procedures The coding procedure had three steps. First, the newspaper advertisements were unitized into themes. Themes’ functions were categorized into three subfunctions. Acclaims portray the candidate or the candidate’s party favorably; attacks portray the opposing candidate or opposing candidate’s party unfavorably; defenses explicitly respond to a prior attack on the candidate or the candidate’s party (Benoit, Pier & Blaney, 1997). Most of the utterances in political advertisements belong to one of the three functions listed above. Some utterances did not fit into any of these functions were omitted. For instance, a few themes that discuss the past events without praising the candidate or disparaging the opponent were excluded. Second, the topics of acclaims and attacks were divided into either policy or character. If a theme discussing governmental action and problems pertaining to such action, it is coded as policy. If a theme addresses properties, abilities, or attributes of a candidate (or party), it is coded as character. Defenses were coded as one of the image

Authors: Lee, Cheolhan. and Choi, Yun Jung.
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9
analysis of newspaper advertisements better contribute to understanding the function of
political discourse in South Korea.
The incumbent party candidate in Korea was Lee, Hoichang, and the challenger
party candidate was Kim, Daejung. South Korea has established a two-party system;
thus, minor party candidates were not included in the study. The coding unit of this study
is theme. Advertisements were unitized into themes, or parts of the ad that addressed a
coherent idea (Benoit, 1997; Benoit, Blaney, & Pier, 2000).
Coding Procedures
The coding procedure had three steps. First, the newspaper advertisements were
unitized into themes. Themes’ functions were categorized into three subfunctions.
Acclaims portray the candidate or the candidate’s party favorably; attacks portray the
opposing candidate or opposing candidate’s party unfavorably; defenses explicitly
respond to a prior attack on the candidate or the candidate’s party (Benoit, Pier & Blaney,
1997). Most of the utterances in political advertisements belong to one of the three
functions listed above. Some utterances did not fit into any of these functions were
omitted. For instance, a few themes that discuss the past events without praising the
candidate or disparaging the opponent were excluded.
Second, the topics of acclaims and attacks were divided into either policy or
character. If a theme discussing governmental action and problems pertaining to such
action, it is coded as policy. If a theme addresses properties, abilities, or attributes of a
candidate (or party), it is coded as character. Defenses were coded as one of the image


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