Perception of Violence in Multimodal Text: Cross-Disciplinary Approach


Multimodal Text Multimodality Violence Extremism Structural Semiotics Cognitive Linguistics Psycholinguistics Eye-tracking Reader Personality Perception

How to Cite

Voroshilova, M., Zlokazov, K., & Plotnikova, M. (2024). Perception of Violence in Multimodal Text: Cross-Disciplinary Approach. Galactica Media: Journal of Media Studies, 6(2), 205-222.


The article deals with the linguistic and psychological concepts explaining the perception of multimodal texts that imply information about violence. The importance of the subject is verified by the task of countering the spread of ideologies of violence, extremism, and terrorism in Internet communication. The multimodal text is considered a popular means of propagating radical ideas relating to incitement to social discord. The absence of complex models explaining the transmission of violence through multimodal texts is observed. It is shown that linguistic and psychological concepts can be relevant resources for building such a model. The purpose of the article is to generalize concepts in the form of intra- and extralinguistic factors that determine the perception of information about violence in a multimodal text. The generalization of cognitive linguistic theories into the group of intralinguistic factors is complemented by the conclusion that the semantic structure of a multimodal text is formed by visual, sign, and verbal coding systems; the perception of information about violence is determined by the typicality of linguistic means and the presence of logical and semantic links between the elements of a multimodal text. The conclusion is made about the influence of aggressiveness, personal attitude toward violence, and the experience of using violence on the perception of multimodal information about violence by the reader. The article may be interesting to linguists, psychologists, and a wide range of researchers in the field of humanities and humanities-related social sciences.


Aliev, R. T. (2023). Crossing the Threshold: School Shooting as a “Ritual of Chiral Initiation.” Galactica Media: Journal of Media Studies, 5(3), 221–245.

Anderson, C. A., & Bushman, B. J. (2001). Effects of Violent Video Games on Aggressive Behavior, Aggressive Cognition, Aggressive Affect, Physiological Arousal, and Prosocial Behavior: A Meta-Analytic Review of the Scientific Literature [PsycEXTRA Dataset].

Buss, D. M. (1998). The evolution of interactionism in personality and social psychology: (592722011-002) [PsycEXTRA Dataset].

De Castro, B. O. (2004). The development of social information processing and aggressive behaviour: Current issues. European Journal of Developmental Psychology, 1(1), 87–102.

Gazizulina, L. R. (2012). The Comparative Analysis of Realisation of Concepts Nasilie/Violence in Didactic Texts of School Literature. Kazan Science, 11, 190–194.(In Russian).

Gazizulina, L. R. (2013). The Symmetry and Asymmetry of the Basal Layer of the Variants of Concepts Nasilieand Violence. Bulletin of Chelyabinsk State University, 13, 23–29.(In Russian).

Gorbacheva, A. V., &Varlamov, A. A. (2018). On the Hypothetical Model of Perception and Comprehension of Polycode Texts. Mezhdunarodnyy aspirantskiy vestnik. Russkiy yazyk za rubezhom, 4, 66–73.(In Russian).

Gorbacheva, A. V., Puchkova, A. N., & Osadchiy, M. A. (2018). On Principals of Perception and Semantic Laws of Sign Interpretation in Descriptive Part of Polycode Texts. Sbornik nauchnykh trudov «Uchenye zapiski UO „VGU im. P.M. Masherova“», 27, 53–57.(In Russian).

Halliday, M. A. K. (1978). Language as Social Semiotic: The Social Interpretation of Language and Meaning. Edward Arnold.

Holt, J. (2019, April 4). White Nationalists Adopt Clowns as Their Next Racist Symbol (Yes, Seriously). Right Wing Watch.

Horsley, T. A., de Castro, B. O., & Van der Schoot, M. (2009). In the Eye of the Beholder: Eye-tracking Assessment of Social Information Processing in Aggressive Behavior. Journal of Abnormal Child Psychology, 38(5), 587–599.

Jia, H. (2019). Foundations of the Theory of Signs (1938): A critique. Chinese Semiotic Studies, 15(1), 1–14.

Karasik, V. I. (2004). Yazykovoy krug: Lichnost', kontsepty, diskurs. Gnozis.(In Russian).

Laue, C., Griffey, M., Lin, P.-I., Wallace, K., van der Schoot, M., Horn, P., & Barzman, D. (2018). Eye Gaze Patterns Associated with Aggressive Tendencies in Adolescence. Psychiatric Quarterly, 89(3), 747–756.

Lin, P.-I., Hsieh, C.-D., Juan, C.-H., Hossain, M. M., Erickson, C. A., Lee, Y.-H., & Su, M.-C. (2016). Predicting Aggressive Tendencies by Visual Attention Bias Associated with Hostile Emotions. Plos One, 11(2), e0149487.

Norris, S. (2004). Analyzing Multimodal Interaction: A Methodological Framework. Routledge.

O’Halloran, K. L., Tan, S., Wignell, P., Bateman, J. A., Pham, D.-S., Grossman, M., & Moere, A. V. (2019). Interpreting Text and Image Relations in Violent Extremist Discourse: A Mixed Methods Approach for Big Data Analytics. Terrorism and Political Violence, 31(3), 454–474.

Potts, A. (2010). ‘Sign’. Critical Terms for Art History. University of Chicago Press.

Sergeeva, Yu. M., & Uvarova, E. A. (2010). Polycode Text: Peculiarities of Structureand Perception. Nauka i shkola, 4, 28–134.(In Russian).

Sonin, A. G. (2005). Experimental Studies of Multimodal Text Comprehension: Main Directions. Voprosy Jazykoznanija, 6, 115–123.(In Russian).

Sonin, A. G. (2006). Modelirovanie mekhanizmov ponimaniya polikodovykh tekstov [Doctoral Thesis]. Moskva. (In Russian).

Vashunina, I. V. (2009). Vzaimovliyanie verbal'nykh i neverbal'nykh (ikonicheskikh) sostavlyayushchikh pri vospriyatii kreolizovannogo teksta [Doctoral Thesis]. Moskva. (In Russian).

Wignell, P., O’Halloran, K. L., Tan, S., Lange, R., & Chai, K. (2018). Image and text relations in ISIS materials and the new relations established through recontextualisation in online media. Discourse & Communication, 12(5), 535–559.

Wrangham, R. W. (2017). Two types of aggression in human evolution. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 115(2), 245–253.

Yakin, H. S. M., & Totu, A. (2014). The Semiotic Perspectives of Peirce and Saussure: A Brief Comparative Study. Procedia - Social and Behavioral Sciences, 155, 4–8.

Zlokazov, K. V., & Lipnitsky, A. V. (2018). Violence in Creolized Text: Analysis of Comprehension Patterns. Political Linguistics, 71, 135–143.(In Russian).

Zubakin, M.A. (2012). Psychosemantics Estimation of Violence Scenes in Movies and Spectators’ Depression. Bulletin of the South Ural State University. Series “Psychology”, 17, 20–29.(In Russian).

Zumbach, J., Seitz, C., & Bluemke, M. (2015). Impact of violent video game realism on the self-concept of aggressiveness assessed with explicit and implicit measures. Computers in Human Behavior, 53, 278–288.

Creative Commons License

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.