Corpus Stylistics

Speech, Writing and Thought Presentation in a Corpus of English Writing

By Elena Semino, Mick Short

© 2010 – Routledge

268 pages

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Paperback: 9780415697927
pub: 2011-09-14
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About the Book

This book combines stylistic analysis with corpus linguistics to present an innovative account of the phenomenon of speech, writing and thought presentation - commonly referred to as 'speech reporting' or 'discourse presentation'.

This new account is based on an extensive analysis of a quarter-of-a-million word electronic collection of written narrative texts, including both fiction and non-fiction. The book includes detailed discussions of:

  • The construction of this corpus of late twentieth-century written British narratives taken from fiction, newspaper news reports and (auto)biographies
  • The development of a manual annotation system for speech, writing and thought presentation and its application to the corpus.
  • The findings of a quantitive and qualitative analysis of the forms and functions of speech, writing and thought presentation in the three genres represented in the corpus.
  • The findings of the analysis of a range of specific phenomena, including hypothetical speech, writing and thought presentation, embedded speech, writing and thought presentation and ambiguities in speech, writing and thought presentation.
  • Two case studies concentrating on specific texts from the corpus.

Corpus Stylistics shows how stylistics, and text/discourse analysis more generally, can benefit from the use of a corpus methodology and the authors' innovative approach results in a more reliable and comprehensive categorisation of the forms of speech, writing and thought presentation than have been suggested so far. This book is essential reading for linguists interested in the areas of stylistics and corpus linguistics.

Table of Contents

1. A Corpus-Based Approach to the Study of Discourse Presentation in Written Narratives 2. Methodology: The Construction and Annotation of the Corpus 3. A Revised Model of Speech, Writing and Thought Presentation 4. Speech Presentation in the Corpus: A Quantitative and Qualitative Analysis 5. Writing Presentation in the Corpus: A Quantitative and Qualitative Analysis 6. Thought Presentation in the Corpus: A Quantitative and Qualitative Analysis 7. Specific Phenomena in Speech, Writing Presentation 8. Case Studies of Specific Texts from the Corpus 9. Conclusion

About the Authors

Elena Semino is Senior Lecturer in the Department of Linguistics and Modern English Language at Lancaster University. She is the author of Language and World Creation in Poems and Other Texts (1997), and co-editor (with Jonathan Culpetter) of Cognitive Stylistics: Language and Cognition in Text Analysis (2002). Mick Short is Professor of English Language and Literature at Lancaster University. He has written Exploring the Language of Poems, Plays and Prose (1997) and (with Geoffrey Leech) Style in Fiction (1997). He founded the Poetics and Linguistics Association and was the founding editor of its international journal, Language and Literature.

About the Series

Routledge Advances in Corpus Linguistics

Corpus based linguistics is a dynamic area of linguistic research. The series aims to reflect the diversity of approaches to the subject, and thus to provides a forum for debate and detailed discussion of the various ways of building, exploiting and theorizing about the use of corpora in language studies.

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Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
LAN000000
LANGUAGE ARTS & DISCIPLINES / General
LAN009000
LANGUAGE ARTS & DISCIPLINES / Linguistics / General