Political Discourse and Historical, Colonial and Neo-Colonial Regimes of Power

Guest Editors: Gatitu Kiguru (Kenyatta University, Kenya) and Phyllis Mwangi (Kenyatta University, Kenya).

Foucault contends that ‘power is everywhere’, diffused and embodied in discourse, knowledge and ‘regimes of truth’ (Foucault, 1991). The view of power as a regime of truth acknowledges the fact that power is in a constant state of negotiation. A critical study of political discourse can reveal the discursive practices that shape the prevailing power structures, sustain and challenge them. Regimes of truth are discursively defined, reinforced and redefined and the avenue for this issocial institutions (education, religion, law,media, political, economic etc.). These discursive practices shape society and the power asymmetries in it. The traditional view of power is almost always negative. However, it is important to remember that power need not always be negative. It is true that power ‘excludes’; it ‘represses’; it ‘censors’; it ‘abstracts’; it ‘masks’; it ‘conceals’. However; it is also true that power produces: it produces reality; it produces domains of objects and rituals of truth(Foucault 1991). The fluidity of power allows the powerless to stage resistance.

This thematic issue of Language, Discourse, &Societywelcomes both theoretical and empirical articles that focus on how political discourses in historical, colonial and neo-colonial contexts replicate and reinforce dominant regimes of power. It also welcomes contributions that show howthe macro-structures of power are discursively challenged and even reengineered through discourse in micro-relations that are thecapillaries of normal everyday practices(Välikangas, A &Seeck, H, 2011). The thematic issue specifically encourages contributions rooted in the sociology of language, sociolinguistics, but also which take an interdisciplinary approach to the call topic and thus employ the methods of critical linguistic enquiry to economic, political and sociological problems.

While the guest editors are notably influenced by Foucault’s views on power as well as the views and methods of Critical Discourse Analysis, contributions that use other approaches are highly welcome.

Submissions can be done in English, Spanish and French.

Please follow the author guidelines which includes a template for formatting.


  • Dec 2018: call for abstracts
  • 31th January 2019: submission of abstracts
  • 31th March 2019: Feedback on abstracts
  • 31th May 2019: Submission of full articles
  • 31th August 2019: Feedback from reviewers
  • 30th October 2019: submission of revised articles

This thematic issue will be published in December 2019.

SUBMISSION TO BE DONE ONLINE (see below to create an account or log in)

 The contact email of the guest-editors for any query is: ldspowerissue19@gmail.com


Foucault, M. (1991). Discipline and punish: the birth of a prison. London: Penguin.

Hoffman, M. (2013).Foucault and power: The confluence of political engagement on theories of power. London: Bloomsburry Publishing

Rabinow, P. (ed.) (1991). The Foulcault Reader: An introduction to Foulcault’s thought. London: Penguin.

Välikangas, A., & Seeck, H. (2011). Exploring the Foucauldian interpretation of power and subject in organisation. Journal of Management and Organisation, 17 (6) 812-827

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