We are independent & ad-supported. We may earn a commission for purchases made through our links.
Advertiser Disclosure
Our website is an independent, advertising-supported platform. We provide our content free of charge to our readers, and to keep it that way, we rely on revenue generated through advertisements and affiliate partnerships. This means that when you click on certain links on our site and make a purchase, we may earn a commission. Learn more.
How We Make Money
We sustain our operations through affiliate commissions and advertising. If you click on an affiliate link and make a purchase, we may receive a commission from the merchant at no additional cost to you. We also display advertisements on our website, which help generate revenue to support our work and keep our content free for readers. Our editorial team operates independently of our advertising and affiliate partnerships to ensure that our content remains unbiased and focused on providing you with the best information and recommendations based on thorough research and honest evaluations. To remain transparent, we’ve provided a list of our current affiliate partners here.

What Are the Different Types of Political Discourse?

By Peter Hann
Updated May 23, 2024
Our promise to you
Language & Humanities is dedicated to creating trustworthy, high-quality content that always prioritizes transparency, integrity, and inclusivity above all else. Our ensure that our content creation and review process includes rigorous fact-checking, evidence-based, and continual updates to ensure accuracy and reliability.

Our Promise to you

Founded in 2002, our company has been a trusted resource for readers seeking informative and engaging content. Our dedication to quality remains unwavering—and will never change. We follow a strict editorial policy, ensuring that our content is authored by highly qualified professionals and edited by subject matter experts. This guarantees that everything we publish is objective, accurate, and trustworthy.

Over the years, we've refined our approach to cover a wide range of topics, providing readers with reliable and practical advice to enhance their knowledge and skills. That's why millions of readers turn to us each year. Join us in celebrating the joy of learning, guided by standards you can trust.

Editorial Standards

At Language & Humanities, we are committed to creating content that you can trust. Our editorial process is designed to ensure that every piece of content we publish is accurate, reliable, and informative.

Our team of experienced writers and editors follows a strict set of guidelines to ensure the highest quality content. We conduct thorough research, fact-check all information, and rely on credible sources to back up our claims. Our content is reviewed by subject-matter experts to ensure accuracy and clarity.

We believe in transparency and maintain editorial independence from our advertisers. Our team does not receive direct compensation from advertisers, allowing us to create unbiased content that prioritizes your interests.

A classification of types of political discourse depends on the definition of what is meant by the political sphere. One could take the limited view that political discourse is simply the words and text produced by politicians, but there are many other participants in a democracy. It may be more accurate to look at the political activities of electors, pressure groups, media, political parties and other players in the political process and examine the types of discourse in which they engage. Although discourse is primarily in the spoken and written word, the definition may be widened to include communication by actions, as in political demonstrations and sit-ins.

One of the most familiar types of political discourse involves the speech and debate within the congress or parliament of a nation. This is generally formal by nature, including written speeches, motions, debates on legislation and discussions in committee. Written text associated with this type of discourse is the written record of speeches or draft laws and resolutions, together with legislation approved by the legislative body.

Outside the formal legislative organs, political parties may engage in discourse during conferences, conventions and primary election campaigns. At election time, there is direct discourse with the public on citizens' doorsteps. There also is debate between the parties outside the legislature, as seen in interviews, televised debates and public meetings. The parties also issue their own literature in the form of newspapers or pamphlets aimed at electors on a federal, state or municipal level. Some politicians and pressure groups communicate their ideas through books, magazines and films, an example being the environmental movement.

Demonstrations by the public are another type of political discourse. These combine actions such as processions or marches with the written word in the form of banners or slogans and the spoken word in chanted demands or speeches made. Pressure groups and parties also may campaign through televised advertisements or advertising in the streets, in addition to communication with the electorate through electronic media including websites, telephone and text messages, and video clips.

Government announcements on domestic and foreign affairs are another type of discourse. These include policy announcements, general addresses, and announcements of draft legislation. Foreign policy statements are political discourse directed at the politicians or people of another country, and international discourse takes place through diplomatic exchanges or at an international body such as the United Nations. Treaty negotiations and peace talks also are a type of political discourse. Dissidents in a country sometimes engage in political activity through civil disobedience, and a spell in prison or under house arrest may itself become a symbolic form of discourse in some countries, even if the dissident is not permitted to communicate through the spoken or written word.

Language & Humanities is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.
Discussion Comments
By candyquilt — On Mar 25, 2014

My favorite part of elections are the debates on TV. It's so entertaining to watch two candidates trying to overpower one another with their witty answers. And I think that these debates have a huge impact on the outcome of the elections.

By ysmina — On Mar 24, 2014

@discographer-- You've made a good point. Demonstrations are a good example of the influence of political discourse. Through demonstrations, people can change government policies.

At the very basic level, political discourse is an exchange of opinions. The purpose varies of course. When it takes place between policymakers, the goal is to decide on a method to solve a problem. When it takes place between public and policymakers, it's to convince or encourage policymakers to take a certain action. When it takes place between political candidates and public, the candidates are trying to convince the public to vote for them by explaining their positions on topics of importance.

Even though the goals and purposes change, the activity is the same-- exchange of opinions.

By discographer — On Mar 24, 2014

Political discourse of politicians is mostly formal, but the political discourse of citizens and voters can be informal, especially when it's demonstration discourse.

I find demonstration discourse impressive, as well as letters and phone calls to congressmen about specific issues. This type of discourse varies from requests to demands. I think that demands are particularly suitable for a democracy, especially because some politicians forget that democracy is the rule of the people, not the rule of politicians. Through discourse, people are actually practicing their rights as citizens of a democracy.

Language & Humanities, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.

Language & Humanities, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.