Patience Akunna Osondu (PhD), Florence Ebere Ubah (PhD)


Language is intrinsic to the expression of culture. It is a means of communicating values, beliefs and customs. It has an important social function and fosters feeling of group identities and solidarity. It is the means by which culture and its traditions and shared values may be conveyed and preserved. Language therefore occupies a privileged position in identity construction.  This paper investigates language use in our common humanity: A study of Nnamdi Kanu’s speech at the European Union Parliament 2019. The paper under the theoretical framework of identity construction by Bucholtz and Hall (2005) revealed that Nnamdi Kanu a political activist, used all the principles of identity construction theory such as emergence, indexicality, relationality, positionality and partialness to explain to the whole world how the Indigenous People Of Biafra (IPOB) are relegated and marginalized in Nigeria. By examining Nnamdi Kanu’s speech, twenty excerpts were analysed, three research questions were posited and answers given to validate and enrich this theoretical position. The study showcases Nnamdi Kanu as a skillful political propagandist who uses language effectively to profile identity there by present his political claims. The study recommends that researchers should not neglect the use of identity construction theory in the analysis of literary discourse and other forms of political discourse.


Political Speech, Language and Humanity, IPOB, Nnamdi Kanu.

Full Text:



Alabi, T.O. & Ayeloja, K.A. (2021). Hate speech and security challenges: A pragmatic study of Nnamdi Kanu’s speeches in South-eastern Nigerian.

Anagbogu, P.N., Mbah, B.M, & Eme, C.A (2010). Introduction to Linguistics, Awka: Amaka Dreams.

Beard, A. (2000). The language of politics. London: Routedge.

Bucholt, M. & Hall, K. (2005). Identity and interaction: A socio-cultural linguistic approach, discourse studies 7(4-5): 585-614.

Chateris-Black, J. (2014). Analysing Political speeches: Rhetoric discourse and metaphor. New York. Palgrave Macmillian.

Dikenwosi, C.I. & Dimejesi, S.I. (2018). Exploring language, media as a vessel for social mobilization and national integration. African Journal of Multidisciplinary research 2018.

Eze, T.C (2020). Hate speech and political discourse: A study of selected speeches of Nnamdi Kanu. Akwa Journal of English Language and Literary Studies Vol. 7 No 2. 2020.

Igwebuike C.E., & Akoh, A.D. (2021). Self-Legitimation and other-delegitimation in the internet radio speeches of the supreme header of the indigenous people of Biafra>abs. Taylor & Francis online.

Khokhar, S. et al (2016). Exploring role of language in constructing individual identities: A case study of sindh, Pakistan. International Journal of Humanities and Social Science. Vol. 6, No. 3, March 2016.

Kulo, L. (2009). Linguistic features in Political Speeches Lulea University of Technology. Thesis of Department of Language and culture.

Nzeakor, C. & Osondu, P.A. (2017). Convergence language use, best practice for human development: A study of purple Hibiscus by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie. Global international Journal of Research Vol. 1, No. 1,September, 2017.

Nzeakor, N.C. Osondu, P.A & Ubah (2018). The “Howness” of Language as a means towards national integration in selected Nigerian Newspapers. Hofa: African Journal of Multidisciplinary Research. Vol. 3, No. 1 November, 2018.

Onuigbo, S.M. (2019). Language in power in Humanity 154th inaugural lecture of the University of Nigeria. 2019.

Sawyer, S.H. (2013). Exploring identity construction: A case study from an online forum text and diskars 6, 2013 Sawyer. Pdf.

Udensi, P.E., Ogbonnaya, K.A & Ezema C.A (2017). Indigenous Language: A Panacea to techno-industriral Development in Nigeria. A pre-conference proceeding for the 2017 school of General studies International conference held at the University of Nigeria Nsukka (May, 7-10, 2017). english encyclopedia.


  • There are currently no refbacks.





ISSN (Print): 2276-8645





Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License.