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Singing Corporate Social Responsibility: A Multimodal Analysis of the 2018 Budweiser Super Bowl Commercial

Ilaria Moschini, Johnny Wingstedt


The 2018 Super Bowl Commercial of the Budweiser Beer is entitled “Stand by You” and revolves around the pluriannual Water Donation Program of the Anheuser-Busch brewing company. The video features images of the employees of the Budweiser Cartersville, GA brewery organizing the emergency drinking water delivery with the help of American Red Cross, its partner in such disaster-relief efforts over the past 30 years. The images are accompanied by a cover of the 1961 Ben E. King iconic song “Stand by me”. Adopting a socio-semiotic multimodal perspective, the paper aims at analyzing the meaning-making construction of the video in its YouTube contextualization. In detail, the focus of the paper is to understand how the sound and the lyrics of the cover, with their cultural, linguistic and semiotic layers of meaning, constitute the semiotic entry point in the narration and create the soundscape for the framing of Corporate Social Responsibility.


Multimodality; Social Media Discourse; Social Semiotics; Soundscapes; Systemic-Functional Linguistics.

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DOI: https://doi.org/10.7358/ling-2020-001-mowi

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Linguæ & - Rivista di lingue e culture moderne
Registered by Tribunale di Milano (06/04/2012 n. 185)
Online ISSN 1724-8698 - Print ISSN 2281-8952

Dipartimento di Scienze della Comunicazione, Studi Umanistici e Internazionali: Storia, Culture, Lingue, Letterature, Arti, Media
Università degli Studi di Urbino Carlo Bo

Editor-in-Chief: Roberta Mullini
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Editorial Staff: Margaret Amatulli - Alessandra Calanchi - Riccardo Donati - Ivo Klaver  - Massimiliano Morini - Antonella Negri - Luca Renzi

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