style and genre in the english language syllabus l.
Download
Skip this Video
Loading SlideShow in 5 Seconds..
Style and genre in the English language syllabus PowerPoint Presentation
Download Presentation
Style and genre in the English language syllabus

Loading in 2 Seconds...

play fullscreen
1 / 28

Style and genre in the English language syllabus - PowerPoint PPT Presentation


  • 246 Views
  • Uploaded on

Style and genre in the English language syllabus. Hilde Hasselgård. Abstract of talk.

loader
I am the owner, or an agent authorized to act on behalf of the owner, of the copyrighted work described.
capcha
Download Presentation

PowerPoint Slideshow about 'Style and genre in the English language syllabus' - deacon


An Image/Link below is provided (as is) to download presentation

Download Policy: Content on the Website is provided to you AS IS for your information and personal use and may not be sold / licensed / shared on other websites without getting consent from its author.While downloading, if for some reason you are not able to download a presentation, the publisher may have deleted the file from their server.


- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - E N D - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Presentation Transcript
abstract of talk
Abstract of talk

The new English syllabus has an increased emphasis on the learners’ ability to distinguish between formal and informal language use and to adapt their own usage and their texts to different genres and media. Through text examples I will illustrate some linguistic features of formal and informal English and personal and impersonal style and relate these to genre.

from the general objectives of the subject
From the general “Objectives of the subject”

To succeed in a world where English is used for international interpersonal communication, it is necessary to master the English language. Thus we need to develop our vocabulary and our skills in using the systems of the English language; its phonology, grammar and text structuring. We need these skills to listen, speak, read and write, and to adapt our language to an ever increasing number of topics, areas of interest and communication situations. We must be able to distinguish between spoken and written styles and informal and formal styles. Moreover, when using the language in communication, we must also be able to take cultural norms and conventions into consideration.

communication i
Communication I
  • The main area of communication focuses on using the English language to communicate. Communication is achieved through listening, reading, writing, prepared oral production and spontaneous oral interaction, including the use of appropriate communication strategies. It also includes participation in various social arenas, where it is important to train to master an increasing number of genres and forms of expression. Good communication requires knowledge and skills in using vocabulary and idiomatic structures, pronunciation, intonation, spelling, grammar and syntax of sentences and texts.
communication ii
Communication II
  • New media and the development of a linguistic repertoire across subjects and topics are an important part of this main area. Knowing how to be polite and taking social conventions into consideration in any number of linguistic situations are also important skills to master. This goes hand in hand with adapting the language to the recipient and the situation, including distinguishing between formal and informal, written and spoken registers.
programfag
Programfag
  • VG1, Internasjonal engelsk: ‘bevissthet om språklige virkemidler i ulike sjangrer.’ ‘Tilpassing av språkbruk i ulike sosiale, kulturelle og faglige situasjoner står sentralt i hovedområdet.’
  • VG2, Samfunnsfaglig engelsk: ‘bruk av språklige virkemidler i ulike typer tekster.’ ‘Tilpassing av språkbruk til ulike sosiale, kulturelle og samfunnsfaglige sammenhenger inngår i hovedområdet.’
  • VG2, Engelskspråklig litteratur og kultur: ‘bruk av språklige virkemidler og stilistiske trekk i litterære tekster.’ ‘Tilpassing av språkbruk til ulike sosiale og faglige situasjoner knyttet til litteratur og kultur står sentralt i hovedområdet.’
some findings from learner language research
Some findings from learner language research

Advanced Scandinavian learners of English tend to

  • Write in a relatively informal style, irrespective of genre
    • Use of contracted forms
    • Informal sentence connectors (and, but, so, then)
    • Use of approximators (and so on, kind of)
    • Underuse of non-finite clauses
    • Incomplete sentences
they also tend to
… they also tend to…
  • Write in an involved, interactive style
    • First and second person pronouns
    • Questions and imperatives
    • Explicit expression of personal opinions (subjective stance); I think, I guess, I feel …
    • “Conversational” discourse markers; well, you know …
  • Mix styles – i.e. show a lack of style / genre awareness
a text example from nicle
A text example from NICLE

Essay question:

Some people say that in our modern world, dominated by science, technology and industrialisation, there is no longer a place for dreaming and imagination. What is your opinion?

Extract from the end of an essay on handout.

informal features
Informal features

Things have changed. Having the girl, or boy, and a job isn't enough anymore. We want more now, don't we? Instead of 'going steady' with the love of our lives, we like to stay single and free agents, don't we? Thenwe'll have more time to spend on ourselves and we don't have to worry about the other person, children etc. Instead of faithfully working at the same place for year after year it's better to change jobs biennially, isn't it? Because if you stay in the same place for a long timeyou'll lower your chances for self-realization, right?

I'm not meaning to be reactionary about anything. Actually, you know, I'm not a reactionary kind of a (modern) man. But I honestly think that we tend to accept this 'life in the fast lane' kind of development without giving it any greater reflection.

interactive features
Interactive features

Things have changed. Having the girl, or boy, and a job isn't enough anymore. We want more now, don't we? Instead of 'going steady' with the love of our lives, we like to stay single and free agents, don't we? Then we'll have more time to spend on ourselves and we don't have to worry about the other person, children etc. Instead of faithfully working at the same place for year after year it's better to change jobs biennially, isn't it? Because if you stay in the same place for a long time you'll lower your chances for self-realization, right?

I'm not meaning to be reactionary about anything. Actually, you know, I'm not a reactionary kind of a (modern) man. But I honestly think that we tend to accept this 'life in the fast lane' kind of development without giving it any greater reflection.

mixing of styles
Mixing of styles

Formal features

  • Use of non-finite participle clauses
  • Noun phrases with generic reference: the average modern man
  • Nominalization: self-realization, development, reflection, impersonality, industrialization, commercialization …
  • Some formal vocabulary; biennially (‘bianually’), self-realization, reactionary, reflection, opening remarks …
a model for register analysis halliday s concepts of field tenor and mode
A model for register analysis: Halliday’s concepts of field, tenor and mode
  • Field refers to ‘ the field of discourse’, what kind of social action is actually happening, what the participants are engaged in.
  • Tenor refers to ‘the tenor of the discourse’, who the participants are, the roles they are adopting at any point, what their social relationships are to each other.
  • Mode refers to the ‘mode of discourse’, the kind of role the language is playing, its function in the particular context, the channel used (spoken or written or some combination of the two) and also ‘the rhetorical mode’: ‘what is being achieved by the text in terms of such categories as persuasive, expository, didactic and the like’.
a simplified model questions to ask before preparing a text
A simplified model: Questions to ask before preparing a text
  • What is the text going to be about?
  • Who are we speaking/writing to?
    • How well do we know them?
    • How old are they?
    • Do they have the same social/professional status as ourselves?
    • Are they familiar with the topic?
  • Is the discourse private or public?
  • What is the purpose of the text? (Do we want to make social contact, argue a case, sell something, apologize, describe something, tell a story, issue a warning or something else?)
  • Does the text need to fit into a particular format?
what is genre register
What is genre (register)?
  • Genres = different configurations of field, tenor and mode (Halliday)
  • Registers are varieties of language that are associated with different circumstances and purposes (Biber et al)
    • Some variables: spoken/written, interactiveness and real-time production, shared situation, main communicative purpose, audience)
  • The context of language use, the purpose of the speaker or writer, the subject matter of what is being said or written – these are some of the other factors which influence the form language takes. (Chafe & Danielewicz 1987: 84)
  • (The term ‘genre’ is often used about ‘outward’ criteria, and register for linguistic characteristics)
slide18
Chafe & Danielewicz 1987: A study of four different genres of English: conversations, lectures, letters, academic papers

Some main findings re. vocabulary:

  • Speakers tend to operate with a narrower range of lexical choices than writers.
    • Speakers also tend to use more approximators, such as sort of, kind of, like … instead of looking for a more precise word. (lectures and conversations did not differ much from each other, but both differed from writing.)
  • Writing is typically more explicit than speech; full noun phrases rather than pronouns
  • Speakers and writers do not choose from the same supply of vocabulary (i.e. colloquial vocabulary tends not to be chosen by writers, while literary vocabulary tends not to be chosen in spontaneous speech)
some findings re grammar and syntax
Some findings re. grammar and syntax
  • Written clauses tend to be longer than spoken clauses
  • Information density is higher in writing than in speech
  • Prepositional phrases as noun modifiers, nominalizations and attributive adjectives are more frequent in writing.
    • lectures and letters are rather similar as regards the frequency of these features, while conversation has very little and academic papers very much of them.
  • Conjoined phrases are more frequent in writing (she tried to help the children focus and structure their discourse)
  • Participles (as adjectives or as verb in non-finite clauses) are more frequent in writing.
more findings re grammar and syntax
More findings re. grammar and syntax
  • Co-ordination (of main clauses) is more frequent in speech (particularly conversation)
  • Subordination (complex sentences) is more frequent in writing.
  • Features of involvement and interaction belong to spoken – particularly dialogic – genres (e.g. responses and you know, use of first and second person pronouns).
  • Abstract subjects and passive constructions were more frequent in the two academic genres, less frequent in letters and conversation (formality level independent of the speech/writing dimension)
conversation about cooking
Conversation about cooking

Ann It's lovely Joyce it's really nice

JoyceMm

Anndo it with mince meat and it's cheap and erm, but my, erm <..> chopped onions, I can't, I'm allergic to mushrooms, it's nice with mushrooms in, if you like mushrooms

JoyceOh yeah

Annerm chop my oni-- onio-- onions er onions up and erm, what do they call it? <pause> It's sort of like cucumber

Joyce<-|-> Oh er <-|->

Ann<-|-> green stuff <-|-> not <unclear >

Aleccourgettes

AnnYeah, courgettes <-|-> do a little brown frying <-|->

Joyce <-|-> Yeah, yeah <-|-> yeah

Annand then cut some bacon up, put that in saucepan just let it brown a bit

informal interactive features
Informal / interactive features
  • Dialogue – turn-taking  response markers (mm, yeah)
  • Repetition (of own and other’s words), pauses, incomplete structures
  • Approximators (sort of like), metatextual comments (what do they call it), vague expressions (greenstuff)
  • Short (main) clauses, co-ordination
  • Active voice
academic text about cooking
Academic text about cooking

No doubt this perception – of cooking's creative potential – is also influenced by advertising and by the attention devoted to cooking in women's magazines and similar literature. The object of the exercise as presented in such channels of communication is not how to get the most nutritious meals prepared in the shortest possible time but rather how to go beyond the usual range of meals with time-consuming inventiveness and culinary skill. The aim is not simple efficiency. Instead it is an elaboration of the task, designed to subtract it from the category of "work" and add it to the creative pleasure dimension. This treatment of cooking, reflected in the comments of these housewives, is a particularly clear demonstration of how the social denial of housework as work operates.

formal features
Formal features
  • Examples of formal vocabulary: perception, creative potential, similar, nutritious, inventiveness, culinary, elaboration, social denial.
  • Formal grammar: non-finite clauses (devoted to …, as presented in …, designed to subtract …, reflected in …); long and complex noun phrases (cooking’s creative potential, a particularly clear demonstration of how the social denial of housework as work operates …); no contracted forms; nouns that are formed from verbs or adjectives (perception, inventiveness, efficiency, elaboration, treatment, demonstration, denial), conjoined phrases (e.g. time-consuming inventiveness and culinary skill).
  • No signs of interaction with addressee.
notes about style and register
Notes about style and register
  • Since Norwegian learners normally master informal registers of English better than formal ones, they should be aware that a more formal style is often required, e.g. in academic essays, reports, and texts that are intended for publication.
  • Correct spelling and grammar are important in more formal registers.
  • A varied and precise vocabulary is (even) more important in formal (written) English than in informal (spoken) English.
  • Formal written English has few interactive features.
  • Some registers of spoken English are formal. When speaking formally, e.g. in formal presentations, public speeches / debates or job interviews, one should avoid slang and swearwords and excessive use of other informal phrases, such as you know, I mean and you see.
examples of exercises to train style and genre awareness
Examples of exercises to train style and genre awareness
  • Go through a text that is typical of a genre and identify some stylistic features (e.g. look at pronoun use, use of passive, use of non-finite clauses, use of questions, literary/informal vocabulary). Use those features to write parallel texts (‘pastiches’)
  • Rewrite a text in different style.
  • Let pupils/groups write texts in different genres on the same topic. (Example: picture of a dramatic event, e.g. car crash: write short newspaper notice, postcard, insurance claim, eyewitness report, story to tell in pub, propaganda for road safety)
last but not least
Last but not least…
  • It is impossible to teach all individual genres
  • It should be possible to master a number of genres by being aware of features of informal and formal language use and coupling them with the purpose of and the audience for the text.

THE END

some books articles that include notes on style and genre register
Some books/articles that include notes on style and genre/register

Biber, Douglas, Susan Conrad, Geoffrey Leech. 2002. Longman Student Grammar of Spoken and Written English. London: Longman.

Magne Dypedahl, Hilde Hasselgård and Berit Løken. 2006. Introducing English Grammar. Bergen: Fagbokforlaget.

Hillier, Hilary. 2004. Analysing Real Texts: Research Studies in Modern English Language. Basingstoke: Palgrave.

Chafe, Wallace, Jane Danielewicz. 1987. Properties of spoken and written language. In Horowitz, R. and S.J. Samuels, Comprehending Oral and Written Language. San Diego: Academic Press, 83–113.

Hasselgård, Hilde. Thematic choice and expressions of stance in English argumentative texts by Norwegian learners. To appear in K. Aijmer, Corpora and Language Teaching (Amsterdam: Benjamins)