Guy, Matthew W.
Palmer, Heather; Jones, Rebecca
College of Arts and Sciences
University of Tennessee at Chattanooga
Place of Publication
This paper explores the growing genre of fake news, a blend of information, entertainment, and satire, in main stream mass media, specifically examining the work of Stephen Colbert. First, this work examines classic definitions of satire and contemporary definitions and usages of irony in an effort to understand how they function in the fake news genre. Using a theory of postmodern knowledge, this work aims to illustrate how satiric news functions epistemologically using both logical and narrative paradigms. Specific artifacts are examined from Colbert’s speech in an effort to understand how rhetorical strategies function during his performances.
Without the gracious help of several supporting faculty members, this thesis simply would not exist. I would like to acknowledge Dr. Matthew Guy, who agreed to direct this project, a piece of work that I was eager to tackle though I lacked a steadfast compass. Thank you, Dr. Rebecca Jones, for both stern revisions and kind encouragement, and knowing the appropriate times for each. I would like to thank Dr. Palmer for planting the idea that this paper would eventually grow into and for genuine, honest feedback and inspiration. Finally, I’d like to express the deepest gratitude to Dr. Susan North, my unofficial committee member, for authentic encouragement and much appreciated help, rooted in nothing more than sheer kindness and shared scholarly interests. To all of you: may my academic career hold a candle to the fire that yours have kindled.
M. S.; A thesis submitted to the faculty of the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga in partial fulfillment of the requirements of the degree of Master of Science.
Colbert report (Television program); Satire
English Language and Literature
vi, 65 leaves
Broussard, Paige L., "Fake news, real hip: rhetorical dimensions of ironic communication in mass media" (2013). Masters Theses and Doctoral Dissertations.