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Bilanki Andang

RWS 1302

Genre Analysis Final Draft
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INTRODUCTION

Great Britain has been a part of the European Union since 1973, and for the most part, it

has been a mutually beneficial relationship for both parties. That is why many people around

the world were shocked when the citizens of the U.K. voted to leave the European Union, a

process that will take at least two years. The vote took place in June of 2016 and was decided

by a very narrow margin. This ongoing process has been given the name “Brexit” by the media.

Brexit will be a very long and drawn-out process that will affect both Britain and the European

Union tremendously. I will be doing a genre analysis two different pieces related to Brexit. The

first piece is and online BBC article titled “Brexit: All You Need to Know about Britain Leaving the

EU”. The authors of this article, Brian Wheeler and Alex Hunt clearly meant for the piece to be

informative and unbiased. The second piece is a speech given by British Prime Minister Theresa

May explaining how the British people will move on with the planned exit of the European

Union. This piece is obviously one- sided and clearly in favor of Britain leaving the EU.

AUDIENCE AND PURPOSE

Although the purpose of these two pieces may differ, the audience of the BBC article

seems to encompass Theresa May’s intended audience. The article is trying to reach anyone

who wants to really understand Brexit and what it means for Britain and its citizens. The second

piece is really meant for the British public. This is evidenced in the speech as Theresa May

makes mention of Britain many times, while never really mentioning any other country. The

purpose of the first piece is in the title; All you Need to know about Britain Leaving the EU. The

article simply meant inform and let the reader for his or her own opinion, whereas the second
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piece is clearly trying to convince the listeners that Brexit is what is best for Britain. As I said

before, Brexit will affect Britain and Europe tremendously, due to the size and contributions of

Britain to the EU. No matter what, there will be both positives and negatives for both sides if

Brexit pushes through. However, in order for this process to be considered successful, the

positives must far outweigh the negatives. This is exactly what Theresa May is trying to

convince her audience of. The audience the British Prime Minister is trying to reach in her

speech causes her to speak about Britain the most positive way possible. Because the article is

trying to inform people who are interested in the topic of Brexit, it is very explanatory and easy

to understand. The article gives the audience all aspects of the Brexit discussion, while Theresa

May is only inclined to tell her audience how leaving the EU could potentially benefit Britain.

STRUCTURE AND DELIVERY

Because of the differences in opinion, the structure and the delivery of the two pieces

were different. The BBC article is set up in a Frequently Asked Questions format. Every new

topic starts with a question such as “What date will the UK leave the EU?” followed by a

relatively detailed answer. Theresa May’s speech was structured like an essay: There was

in introduction, a body and a conclusion. The language used in the article was formal but easy

to comprehend. Many political and economic terms and phrases, such as “referendum” were

used. The Language in Theresa May’s speech was more positive reinforcement that anything.

She used positive phrases like “Great global trading nation” especially when talking about

Britain as a nation. While Theresa May was the only visual in her speech, the BBC article had

plenty of them. The first piece utilized everything from a video explaining how the European

Union to pictures of people related to Brexit, including ex-Prime Minister David Cameron, who
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resigned after Britain voted to leave the EU. The first piece also included a lot of statistics and

percentages, particularly those that had to do with the Brexit vote. Plainly, the structure of the

BBC article was more complex, but also better organized than that of Theresa May’s speech.

RHETORICAL ISSUES

The first article automatically gains credibility because it is a BBC article. BBC is an

established and well respected global news network. Additionally, everything this article talks

about is fact because it mostly deals with written law and protocol. All the pictures the article

has are referenced. Theresa May has massive credibility as the Head of State of Britain. Because

she was elected by her intended audience, they are inclined to listen to what she has to say.

The speech that Theresa May give was intended largely for an emotional response. She

wanted to assure the British people that they would not just be alright, but better off without

the European Union. The first piece was not in search of any emotion apart from

understanding, as it was pretty much only informational. The article didn’t necessarily want to

tell you how to feel whereas Theresa May did. The first piece just presented the facts as they

were and wanted the reader to feel informed more than anything else. The article leaves other

emotions up to the reader. As previously stated, the evidence from the first article is in the

laws and the bylaws of the European Union. There is a certain protocol that Britain must follow

now that they plan on separating themselves from the EU. Theresa May’s evidence was much

more observational, as seen in this excerpt. “Our political traditions are different. Unlike other

European countries, we have no written constitution, but the principle of Parliamentary

Sovereignty is the basis of our unwritten constitutional settlement. We have only a recent
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history of devolved governance — though it has rapidly embedded itself — and we have little

history of coalition government.”

CONCLUSION

I believe the article achieved its purpose because after reading it, I certainly had a much

better understanding of Brexit. Theresa May’s speech seems to have backfired a little, as the

British public appears to be even more divided on the Brexit subject now than when the

speech was given five months ago. The first piece conveyed its message better because its

evidence was more substantial and its intended audience was much broader. Britain is a

powerful player in global politics and for that reason I believe Brexit is an issue everyone should

be paying attention to. Brexit is a process involving one of the most powerful nations in the

world. This whole thing could take up to six years and if it goes through will affect alliances and

economies all over the globe. This is something that we all should at least be aware of. I would

highly recommend giving All You Need to Know about Britain Leaving the EU a read.
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SOURCES

Wheeler, Alex Hunt & Brian. "Brexit: All You Need to Know about the UK Leaving the

EU." BBC News. BBC, 19 June 2017. Web. 22 June 2017. <http://www.bbc.com/news/uk-politics-

32810887>.

Amur, Jennifer. "Full Transcript: Theresa May’s Speech on Brexit." The Washington Post.

WP Company, 17 Jan. 2017. Web. 22 June 2017.

<https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/worldviews/wp/2017/01/17/full-transcript-theresa-mays-

speech-on-brexit/?utm_term>.