This study focuses on tense variation as linguistic features of narrative performance using Schiffrin’s (1981) theory of tense variation supported by Labov’s (1972) and Ochs and Cap’s (2001) frameworks of narrative structure. It shows that historical present also performs evaluative function and appears in restricted clauses in progressive aspect indicating the overlap on time between two actions. Shifts into narrative past tense also perform an evaluative function and appears in contexts narrating unexpected event within the complication. Generic and nominalising actions are used to express negative evaluation of an opponent based on an earlier premise. These findings can bring new insights into the way politicians construct arguments in self and other presentation since nominalising negative actions implies comparing the self to an external other. This is achieved in association with stance taking and evaluative commentaries provided by politicians as strategies of positive self and negative other presentation. The study provides a detailed analysis of the linguistic features stated earlier in relation to identity construction and self-presentation exemplifying the use of HP
Keywords: Discourse, Narrative, Historical Present, Narrative-Based Discourse Study.