Communication for Political Interest: The Case Study of Bangladesh’s ex-dictator H. M. Ershad

by Yazdani Ul Islam


Hussain Mohammad Ershad, known as HM Ershad, is one of the few dictators in the world who has flourished in the political arena of Bangladesh even two decades after the end of his autocratic regime. The aim of this paper is to investigate the verbal communication patterns of Ershad to validate his own claim of being transformed into a democratic leader from a dictator. In achieving this, the study specifically analyzed the rhetorical and persuasive strategies employed in Ershad`s speeches as Chief Martial Law Administrator (CMLA), President, Fallen Dictator, Member of Parliament and Special Envoy to Prime Minister. The analysis employs the method of Content Analysis and the findings implies that Ershad is a good articulated speaker who is well aware of the social and political environment for which he constantly changes his vocabulary in his political speeches according to his own political interest to save himself and his political party. The results also found Ershad having a resolute authoritarian nature throughout his political career which nullifies his claim of not being a dictator anymore.

Keywords: political discourse, political communication, democratic leader, autocratic
leader, Bangladesh

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