Abstract The article focusses on the destructiveness as a content category of the media text and the linguistic features of its manifestation. The relevance of the study is determined by the practical expediency of recognizing destructiveness in media texts and, accordingly, developing ways to counteract destructiveness, which, in turn, will improve the psychological climate in society. The concept of destructiveness in linguistics is discussed on the example of Russian-language media texts of various genres (around 500 contexts). The difference between the related concepts of destructiveness and aggressiveness is revealed. It is suggested that to be qualified as destructive, the text should fall under the criteria of intentionality, emotionality, and situationality, the intentional criterion being the decisive one. The destructive intention can be analyzed only by using a complex qualitative contextual analysis, which allows identifying both the meaning and the emotional dominant of the text. Lexical components of the text that help reveal the destructive intention include obscene, negatively colored emotional and evaluative, and substandard vocabulary. Nevertheless, using this kind of vocabulary can be considered destructive only when it contributes to the violation of the axiological structure of the text: violation of the principles of cooperative communication can be observed, the expression (nomination, description) of destructive emotions is present, negative manipulation techniques are employed, which leads to anti-values being represented as dominant.
Keywords: destructiveness, media text, destructive text, intention, axiological structure