Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)

Semester of Degree Completion


Thesis Director

Shane Miller


This thesis focuses on the use of subversion to create multiple meanings in rhetorical texts. Subversion, an element focused on by Fiske (1986, 1987) and McKerrow (1988) in their early contributions to the rhetorical study of multiple meaning texts, has been an ongoing lacunae in the study of polysemic texts. I wish to provide a correction to this problem by offering the concept of subsemy. By examining the role of strategic ambiguity and irony in the functioning of subversion, the concept of subsemy provides a missing picture of how popular cultural texts, film in particular, can function subversively.

Included in

Rhetoric Commons