Linguistic violence and online political communications in China: The example of 鸡的屁 (Ji De Pi) as an ironic spoof of gross domestic product in online debates around environmental issues

Qingning Wang*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


This article discusses the function of linguistic violence in online political communication in China, by using the specific example of 鸡的屁 (pronounced “ji de pi”), an ironic metaphor for gross domestic product. By using systemic functional linguistics as its methodology, the article demonstrates that the term is linguistically violent, and reveals that such a term is used to represent gross domestic product but also means “the fart of a chicken.” It is used in online discussions to show disagreement with and disdain toward the government’s gross domestic product-centric policies. The article argues the use of 鸡的屁, demonstrates Chinese Internet users’ creativities in online discourses, and their use of language to resist government policies that fail to serve their interests. It is not only a way to express oppositional opinions but also the public’s strong emotion of anger.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)18-31
Number of pages14
JournalGlobal Media and China
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2018
Externally publishedYes


  • China
  • environmental debates
  • gross domestic product
  • linguistic violence
  • online political communication

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