Secondary Multimodal Discourse of the Modern English Mass Culture as a Phenomenon of the Convergence Culture

Keywords: discourse, multimodality, text, mass culture, media convergence, participatory сulture, transmedia storytelling.


The article focuses on psycholinguistic features of the secondary multimodal discourse of the modern English mass culture as a linguistic, social and cultural phenomenon and a specific type of communication with a peculiar context. This research paper represents the unique and valid definition of the secondary type discourse, its role, and place as the phenomenon of the convergence culture in the modern English youth subculture.

Based on the differentiation of such related concepts as «youth subculture» and «interpretative community» the research proves that the latter concept is a structural element of a fan subculture. Both of these two concepts model the environment of the secondary textual spaces arranging. The focus of the paper concerns the creation of interpretative communities based on large-scale transmedia projects. The latter develop narration to transfer the world or the project story to the recipient from various perspectives and in different forms.

Another concern of the study is that development and expansion project platforms can go far beyond technical means of information creation and transfer. Transmedia project can concentrate on the primary literary source, TV series, a computer game, and different related products thus anyway contributing to the representation of the whole story. Therefore, this psycholinguistic study focuses on a large-scale factual material the Marvel Universe with its elements represented on various platforms. In combination, these elements create a cohesive plot and a compositional space.

Based on the sociolinguistic experiment results (questionnaires of totally 100 English native speakers), it is claimed that an integrative condition of the Marvel Universe transmedia storytelling is the independence of each separate platform. The main findings of this research cede on the statistical data, the results of online-questionnaires, and show that only 15% of the respondents are acquainted with the part of the Universe represented in comics. 80% of the respondents believe that movies are the starting point for the Universe entering and thus they are perceived as independent works. Only 5% of the respondents expressed their uncertainty about the priority of one or another platform.

Another finding is that transmedia storytelling and participatory сulture are two key features of convergence culture. The recipients of such large-scale projects lose the status of passive consumers and within the interpretative communities, they become producers of a new media content. Thus, we identify the psycholinguistic mechanism of the modern English mass culture secondary textual spaces arranging through the dominant features of a new cultural paradigm, such as an active development of participatory culture, intertextuality, multimodality, and transmedia storytelling.

In the social and discoursive space of the youth subculture, the recipients borrow any idea, image, plot or a character from the cult textual space, convert them into diverse media formats, and expand them across all available platforms. Thus, the recipients create the unified and inseparable secondary multimodal textual space.


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How to Cite
Kuznetsova, M. (2019). Secondary Multimodal Discourse of the Modern English Mass Culture as a Phenomenon of the Convergence Culture. PSYCHOLINGUISTICS, 25(2), 138-163.