Beginning in the late 1980s, Critical Discourse Analysis (CDA) (or Critical Discourse Studies [CDS]) has now become a well-established fi eld in the social sciences. CDA cannot be regarded as a discrete academic discipline in any traditional sense, with a fi xed set of theories, categor ies, assumptions or research methods. Instead, CDA can be seen as a problem-oriented interdisciplinary research programme, subsuming a var iety of approaches, each drawing on different epistemological assumptions, with different theoretical models, research methods and agenda.

What unites them is a shared interest in the semiotic dimensions of power, injustice and political-economic, social or cultural change in our globalized and globalising world and societies. The roots of CDA lie in rhetoric, text linguistics, anthropology, philosophy, socio-psychology, cognitive science, literary studies and sociolinguistics, as well as in applied linguistics and pragmatics.

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