A Semiotic and Multimodal Analysis of Covid-19 Caricatures: the Liberté, The Guardian and The Seattle Times Newspapers

Thumbnail Image
Journal Title
Journal ISSN
Volume Title
Université Mouloud Mammeri Tizi Ouzou
The current research investigates the Semiotic and Multimodal analysis of Covid-19 virus caricatures. The twelve caricatures are selected from three newspapers including Liberté from Algeria, The Guardia from Great Britain and The Seattle Times from The United States of America. The objectives of our study are: to investigate the way the denotative and connotative meanings are manifested in the caricatures, to examine the way the cartoonists have combined the semiotic resources for the purpose of conveying meaning and to draw a comparison between the selected newspapers regarding the caricatures. We have analysed the selected caricatures by relying on Roland Barthes’s Semiology and more precisely the two notions ‘Denotation and Connotation’ (1977) and Kress and Van Leeuwen’s theory The Grammar of Visual Design (2006) based on the qualitative method. The results show that denotation and connotation are presented in the caricatures by a convergence of the linguistic and visual signs. In addition, the cartoonists have used different semiotic resources such as colours, language, gestures and facial expressions. Finally, the results demonstrate that the newspapers in terms of caricatures share some similarities, the objective of the caricatures is to warn people about the dangerous Covid-19 virus, all the caricatures are a type of multimodal communication since they are a combination of different semiotic resources, moreover, Liberté and The Seattle Times share the caricatures of the same cartoonists ‘Dilem for Liberté and Horsey for The Seattle Times’. Concerning the differences, Caricature 1 from Liberté shows the absence of Gaze contrary to the other caricatures. Caricature 3 from Liberté is seen from the oblique angle. The Guardian share the caricatures of different cartoonists contrary to Liberté and The Seattle Times newspapers. Caricature 7 can be interpreted differently with and without the linguistic modes.
30cm ; Ill. en coul.
Caricatures – Coronavirus – Multimodality – Roland Barthes’s Semiology – The Grammar of Visual Design.
Didactics of Foreign Languages