Power Relation Reproduction Through Images: A Critical Semiotic Analysis of Language Textbooks

Hajra Yousif Pardesi


Images are in the form of pictures are often used to make books more attractive or more reader-friendly. Images are iconic signs that also convey some meaning. Unlike texts, the messages conveyed by images are less direct and affect human consciousness. This study offers critical analysis of images used in language textbooks from grade 1 to 5 used in government schools of Sindh, Pakistan. The aim of the study is to analyze what and how power relations are maintained and propagated through iconic signs, and how socioeconomic division and nationalist ideology is reproduced by the state through images. The analysis of images shows the portraying of reality in textbooks that legitimizes power relations. Based on Barthe’s image theory, the theoretical framework is adapted from Fitsumbirhan (2006) for the critical analysis of the images.

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DOI: https://doi.org/10.5296/elr.v5i1.14803


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