The resurrection of the caliphate in ISIS' discourse
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The phenomenon of the Islamic state of Iraq and Syria, ISIS, purports to be a resurrection of the caliphate. This paper investigates the linguistic and rhetorical performance of this caliphate by analyzing the only two public speeches given by the self-proclaimed caliph Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi. The first appearance is his sermon in Mosul in July 2014, in which he formally announces his caliphate (khilafa), and the second is a recorded statement from November 2014. My analysis of these speeches focuses on their performative aspects; that is, the features not normally found in unmarked speech that appear to be deliberately chosen for their extralinguistic meanings. By investigating these features, I aim to uncover these extralinguistic, performative messages, and show how they represent a linguistic "performance" of this caliphate.