How to deal with the risk of nuclear energy? The Three Mile Island accident and the discursive struggle over nuclear energy

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference paper

Abstract

In this paper we look at the development of the discourse of resistance against
nuclear energy in the coverage of four Belgian newspapers of the major nuclear
accident at Three Mile Island (US, 1979). We used discourse-theoretical analysis
(DTA), which combines theoretical concepts of Laclau and Mouffe’s discourse theory with methodological guidelines from critical discourse analysis and qualitative content analysis. The accident provides a good case to study the development of the discourse of resistance, because of the increase of media attention for the nuclear energy issue, which in its turn offered ample opportunities for critical voices to get picked up by the media. At the same time the accident functioned as a dislocation of the dominant nuclear discourse. We found that the discourse of resistance was articulated around the nodal point of risk. After acknowledging the existence of risk, a discursive struggle was going on between proponents and opponents to attach
meaning to ‘risk’.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationPolicies and their publics: Discourses, Actors and Power
PublisherInternational Conference on Interpretive Policy Analysis
Pages1-23
Number of pages23
Volume10
Publication statusPublished - 10 Jul 2015
EventIPA 2015: 10th International Conference in Interpretative Policy Analysis - Law Faculty of the University of Lille 2, Lille, France
Duration: 8 Jul 201510 Jul 2015
https://ipa2015.sciencesconf.org

Conference

ConferenceIPA 2015
Country/TerritoryFrance
CityLille
Period8/07/1510/07/15
Internet address

Keywords

  • nuclear energy
  • risk
  • discourse theory
  • energy politics
  • media
  • protest
  • environmentalism

Fingerprint

Dive into the research topics of 'How to deal with the risk of nuclear energy? The Three Mile Island accident and the discursive struggle over nuclear energy'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this