Staff Profile


Dr Alexandra Polyzou

Senior Lecturer

School: Centre for Language and Linguistics

Campus: Canterbury Main Campus

Tel: 01227 921687

Profile summary

I am currently a Senior Lecturer in Language, Communication and Applied Linguistics and joint Course Director of the BA(Hons) English Language and Linguistics, together with Antonia Linehan.

Prior to becoming a Lecturer in Language, Communication and Applied Linguistics at CCCU I worked at the University of Portsmouth, Oxford Brookes University and Lancaster University.

I hold a PhD in Linguistics and an MA in Language Studies from Lancaster University and a BA in English Language and Literature from the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki.

My interests include Critical Discourse Analysis (especially socio-cognitive approaches); Language, Gender and Sexuality; and Pragmatics.

Research and knowledge exchange

I am interested in researching and supervising postgraduate research in

- Language, Gender and Sexuality, with a special interest in sexual education discourse and media discourse. I am also very interested in identity and the intersections of gender, sexuality, class, ethnicity, age and other identity constructs. 

- Pragmatics and Stylistics, with a focus on critical applications

- Critical Discourse Studies, including pragmatic and cognitive approaches

I am joint founder and co-ordinator of the Discourse, Power & Society reading and research group, together with Eleni Kapogianni (UKC), which meets twice a month during term-time (

I currently supervise more than 10 PhD students. Topics of my current and past PhD students include, but are not limited to:

- the discourse of Donald Trump

- the representation of Kate Middleton and Meghan Markle in British newspapers

- the Algerian Al-Hirak in international news outlets

- the ideological underpinnings of travel documentaries

- populism in Romanian political discourse

- immigration discourse in Britain

- gender and classroom discourse

- metaphor use by visually impaired authors

- empathy and point of view in literature

- attitudes towards the Cretan Greek dialect amongst Greek speakers

- code switching and attitudes towards code switching amongst Algerian multilingual speakers

- language attitudes, ideologies and identities in Japan

- cultural identity and intercultural communication

- Learning Development professional identity in Higher Education

- multimodal analysis of representations of China

Teaching and subject expertise

I normally teach on the BA modules

Language & Gender

Language, Society & Power: Explorations in Sociolinguistics

Language in the Real World: Discourse Analysis

Research Methods (BA and MA level)

I am also involved in BA Individual Study and MA Dissertation supervision.

Other modules I have taught on in CCCU include Exploring Communication and Intercultural Communication

In the past I have also enjoyed teaching modules on discourse analysis, psychology of communication, sociolinguistics, stylistics and media discourse (BA level), as well as Critical Discourse Analysis (MA level).

External activities

4-6 July 2018. Representations of Gender and Ethnicity in the EU migration debate: An examination of UK (online) right-wing press. (with Deanna Demetriou). Critical Approaches to Discourse Analysis across Disciplines (CADAAD). Aalborg University, Aalbor, Denmark.

24-26 September 2015. Pragmatics, Critical Discourse Analysis and Cognition. DiscourseNet International Congress 1: Discourse, Language, Society, Critique. Unversity of Bremen, Bremen, Germany. 

3 July 2015. (keynote). Discourse, Gender and Power: Looking at lifestyle magazines' Cutting Edges. Canterbury Christ Church University, Canterbury, UK. 

1-3 September 2014. Gender and class in Greek lifestyle magazines post-crisis. Critical Approaches to Discourse Analysis across Disciplines (CADAAD). Loránd Eötvös University, Budapest, Hungary. 

10 July 2013. (invited). Running session on The Construction of Gendered and Sexualised Identities in Popular Culture Products (jointly with Irene Theodoropoulou). Workshop on Language, Gender and Sexuality: Discourses of precarious citizenships in precarious times – the Balkan experience. 1-15 July 2013. University of the Aegean. Eressos, Greece. 

4-6 July 2012. Ideological presuppositions in Greek women’s lifestyle magazines: Post-feminism and sexual health. Paper presentation. Critical Approaches to Discourse Analysis across Disciplines (CADAAD). University of Minho, Braga, Portugal.

Publications and research outputs

Polyzou, A. 2018. Pragmatics and Critical Discourse Studies. In Flowerdew, J. and Richardson, J. (eds). The Handbook of Critical Discourse Studies. London: Routledge.

Polyzou, A. 2015. Presupposition in discourse: Theoretical and methodological issues. Critical Discourse Studies. 12 (2), pp. 123-138.

Polyzou, A. 2010. Desires, sexuality and lifestyle. In Canakis, C., Yannakopoulos, K. and Kantsa, V. (eds.) Language and Sexuality through (and beyond) Gender. Cambridge: Cambridge Scholars Publications.

Kosetzi, K. and Polyzou, A. 2009. Ο ΤΕΛΕΙΟΣ ΑΝΤΡΑΣ, Ο ΑΝΤΡΑΣ Ο ΣΩΣΤΟΣ - ‘THE PERFECT MAN, THE PROPER MAN’: Representations of masculinities in Nitro, a Greek men’s lifestyle magazine. Gender and Language. 3 (2), pp. 143-180.


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Last edited: 05/12/2017 10:54:00