Symbolism and metaphors in emergency communication

What is contained in the narrative of an emergency operated by the mass media, which draws so much from the imagination? What is the role of language in this communication and what are the limits of the symbolic and metaphors in emergency communication, so as to avoid being rhetorical? “Angeli del fango”, “eroi delle macerie”, “bomba d’acqua”, “guerra al virus” (angels of the mud, heroes of the ruins, cloudburst (lit. ‘water bomb’), war against the virus): why do we often use war-derived metaphors and what are the alternatives?

In this interview, he talks exclusively to About Emergency the illustrious Matteo Adamoli, Professor of Pedagogy of Communication and Digital Storytelling at the IUSVE Salesian University Institute .

He engages us on a journey that starts from the very meaning of the term “emergency”, passes through the sense of symbolism and metaphors in emergency communication, finds valid solutions and comes to outline some profound dynamics of man.

“An emergency is something sudden, which puts us in a position of profound instability […] and learning to describe it, learning to create an imaginary that helps keep us together, I think is a role played by educationalists, but also by those responsible for communication.”

Matteo Adamoli

Iconographic sources:
Grimm Stories
Humans of New York
Il Giornale della Protezione Civile
Il Mattino di Padova
Sky Tg 24

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