Nonverbal components of the populist style of political communication: A study on televised presidential debates in Poland

  1. Dorota Piontek ORCiD:
  2. Małgorzata Tadeusz-Ciesielczyk ORCiD:


While much of the scholarship on populist political communication focuses on its content and a verbal style, less is known about the nonverbal cues accompanying populist messages. This paper aims in filling that gap by providing findings of the study on characteristics of nonverbal communication of two Polish presidential candidates: Bronisław Komorowski and Andrzej Duda, traced during two debates broadcast on television before the second round of the presidential elections in 2015. The results revealed that both candidates employed nonverbal cues such as appearance, eye contact, facial expressions, or gestures that emphasized their references towards the people or negative attitudes towards elites expressed in their verbal messages. The study also proved that the methods used previously in research on nonverbal content on television (observational protocols and analysis of facial expressions) may be successfully employed in studies on nonverbal components of the populist style of communication.


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Central European Journal of Communication

Vol. 12, No 2 (23), Special Issue 2019

Pages from 150 to 168

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