Analysing Genre: Language Use in Professional Settings by V. K. Bhatia

By V. K. Bhatia

Style research has a customary culture in literature, yet curiosity within the research of non-literary genres has been very fresh. This ebook examines the speculation of style research, appears at style research in motion, taking texts from a wide selection of genres and discusses using style research in language educating and language reform.

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That is one of the main reasons why it is often referred to as applied genre analysis. The above historical development in the field of linguistic and discourse analysis indicates clearly that analysis has steadily progressed in the last thirty years or so from pure surface description to a thicker description of various aspects of texts or genres, whether these are specific features of lexico-grammar or discourse organization. It also underlines the fact that, in order to have an adequate depth of explanation for the analytical insights, one needs to utilize the nature of input from a variety of sources to the description and understanding 47 of text-genres.

It is for this reason that, in many of the studies of discourse analysis, including genre analysis, it has become almost a standard procedure to involve a specialist informant or to seek his or her reactions on various aspects of the investigation. Although this definition of professional and academic genres owes its debt to Swales’s work (1981, 1985, 1990), it differs from it in the way it brings in the psychological, particularly cognitive, level of genre construction. Swales offers a good fusion of linguistic and sociological factors in his definition of a genre; however, he underplays psychological factors, thus undermining the importance of tactical aspects of genre construction, which play a significant role in the concept of genre as a dynamic social process, as against a static one.

If grammatical-rhetorical analysis can be referred to as the writer’s discourse, discourse as interaction is the reader’s discourse. This view of discourse rests on the assumption that the same interpretative procedures are brought into play whether one is involved in actual production of discourse or not (Widdowson, 1979:147); it also takes for granted that in written discourse, the writer assumes a hypothetical reader for whom s/he is supposed to be writing, anticipating his/her reactions and adjusting his/ her writing accordingly, to facilitate communication.

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