Document Type

Thesis - University Access Only

Award Date


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Department / School

Journalism and Mass Communications

First Advisor

Lyle Olson


Research explores the impact of movies on American English as used in newspaper journalism. Movie terms appear to be used to transfer connotations to news events and other concepts. A list of terms was compiled and citations were collected through a search of the Lexis/Nexis database of English language newspapers. Terms in citations were categorized into denotative, connotative, pun/wordplay, or indeterminate by the researcher and an additional coder. Connotative citations were further categorized as to usage without reference to source, with reference to source, or new meaning. Analysis revealed: 1) Newspaper journalists use movie terms connotatively. 2) Journalists use these terms a significant percentage of the time without reference to cinematic source. 3) Usage spans the English-speaking globe. 4) Terms appear in attributed quotations as well as journalist-written text. This indicates an intention to transfer connotations and an expectation that readers will comprehend the usage and associated connotations.

Library of Congress Subject Headings

Motion pictures -- Influence.
Journalism and motion pictures.
Motion pictures and language.
Connotation (Linguistics)


South Dakota State University



Rights Statement

In Copyright