A linguistic analysis of three genres associated with the ship RMS Queen Elizabeth

Megat Khalid, Puteri Zarina binti (2013) A linguistic analysis of three genres associated with the ship RMS Queen Elizabeth. PhD thesis, University of Glasgow.

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Abstract

This thesis is designed to explore three selected genres which are associated with a Scottish-built ship, RMS Queen Elizabeth, and her launch event in 1938. The main focus of this research is an exploration of how writers construct their texts by creating an interpersonal relationship with their readership in order to fulfil their communicative purposes. Specifically, it examines the generic structures and the lexico-grammar of the texts representing these genres from various theoretical perspectives. The present study analyses a set of business letters, newspaper articles and a promotional brochure which revolve around the launch event of the historic liner. The texts representing these genres are examined in terms of their generic structures using Swales’ move analysis model (1990; 2004) and Hasan’s generic structure potential framework (1985). In addition, a lexico-grammatical analysis of these texts focuses on the use of modal verbs as modality markers, analysed using three distinctive frameworks i.e. Brown and Levinson’s (1987) Politeness Theory, Martin and White’s (1998) Appraisal Framework, and Halliday’s (1994) modality system as markers of authorial commitment and/or obligation in propositions. The differing foci on the use of the modal verbs in the study are motivated by the aim of showing how these lexical items function in different genres. As a final analysis, these modal verbs in the respective genres are examined for their lexical properties using Sinclair’s (1996) and Stubbs’ (2002) Models of Extended Lexical Units. The analysis of the lexical properties of the modal verbs suggests that these lexical items possess certain patterns particularly in terms of colligation, semantic preference, and discourse prosody. The generic structures of the texts in the study are also found to serve the communicative purposes of the texts. It is also found that modal verbs are deployed by the writers to serve various functions in the three genres. In conclusion, all these findings indicate that despite being bound by a single event, these genres were clearly produced to address the communicative purposes as agreed upon by members of the individual communities of practice during that period.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Qualification Level: Doctoral
Keywords: genre analysis, modality, modal verbs, interpersonal metafunction
Subjects: P Language and Literature > PE English
Colleges/Schools: College of Arts > School of Critical Studies > English Language
Funder's Name: UNSPECIFIED
Supervisor's Name: Anderson, Dr. Wendy
Date of Award: 2013
Depositing User: ms puteri zarina megat khalid
Unique ID: glathesis:2013-3999
Copyright: Copyright of this thesis is held by the author.
Date Deposited: 20 Feb 2013 09:44
Last Modified: 20 Feb 2013 10:35
URI: http://theses.gla.ac.uk/id/eprint/3999

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