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Title: Aspects of textuality in written English in an African context : a study of communication style and information management, with implications for the status and use of English as a second language
Author: Daborn, Esther
Awarding Body: University of Edinburgh
Current Institution: University of Edinburgh
Date of Award: 1996
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In contexts where English as a second language is used for intranational communication it is a particular kind of learned language adapted to express the communicative norms of its users, and its use has an interesting affect on the textuality of writing. The thesis examines communication style and information management in written material from Malawi: traditional narratives written by school students, and reports, letters to the editor, and editorials from national newspapers in English. The study takes a broad view of textuality to examine the relations between writer, text and audience: what the writer's text purpose is, what he considers an appropriate register to his situation, and the type, sequence, and quantity of information he sees as necessary to achieve his communicative goals. The analysis looks at the linguistic elements selected for topical theme and "new", and other discourse functions which support the presentation of the message. A description of how these elements combine at sentence and text level to affect textuality is presented by looking at 1) the text structure, 2) lexical patterns, 3) grammatical features, 4) sentence themes, 5) patterns in the presentation of "new" within and across sentences which identify the sequence of given/new relations, and the type of supporting information included. The description of the communicative norms of the Malawian Writer of English (MWE) establishes the code as a self-sufficient system of an intra-national variety of English. It shows that the usages in the L2 repertoire which express those norms within the socio-cultural context are strongly influenced by the L1 speech based patterns of orature.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available