Task 1: Language features

In this section of the study guide, we will help you answer Task 1 in the exam set for Samfunnsfaglig engelsk, Høst 2014.

We will give you an outline of the text “Narcissism is alive and well” and pinpoint some of the language features and literary device the author uses in order to get his message across.


The text “Narcissism is alive and well” is an opinion article written by journalist Albert T. Jones. Opinion articles are normally published in media outlets and represent the perspective of the author on a given topic or issue.

In this text, Jones discusses the funeral of Nelson Mandela, former South African President and a key political figure of the 20th century.

The article analyses the attitude of three political leaders at the funeral: the Danish and British Prime Ministers and US president, Barack Obama.

The author describes their conduct at the service as childish and disrespectful, as they were more concerned with taking 'selfies' than with the funeral. He contrasts their attitude with that of the crowds who came to pay their respect to the South African president.

Article structure and language features

In this opinion article, Albert T. Jones’s intention is to criticize the attitude of political leaders present at Nelson Mandela’s funeral. In order to convey his view, the writer employs several techniques in ter...

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