By V. K. Bhatia
Style research has a normal culture in literature, yet curiosity within the research of non-literary genres has been very contemporary. This booklet examines the idea of style research, seems at style research in motion, taking texts from a wide selection of genres and discusses using style research in language instructing and language reform.
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Additional resources for Analysing Genre: Language Use in Professional Settings
40 Which of these functions operates is itself determined by whether the author is exemplifying or generalizing. The most interesting aspect of these two studies of scientific writing is not their attempt to discover which linguistic features are more frequent, but their attempt to discover how specific linguistic features take on restricted values in the structuring of scientific communication. Insights such as these are gained by reference to subject-specific conventions and rhetorical considerations rather than to syntactic or semantic specifications.
Three of the most significant analyses of language use for applied linguistic purposes which belong to this tradition are those of Barber (1962), Crystal and Davy (1969) and Gustaffsson (1975). They draw interesting conclusions about the linguistic/stylistic variation in different varieties. These studies on the frequency of syntactic properties of different varieties of English are interesting and useful in the sense that they provide necessary empirical evidence to confirm or disprove some of the intuitive and impressionistic statements we all tend to make about the high or low incidence of certain syntactic features of various varieties of languages.
This kind of knowledge is greater in those people who professionally belong to the speech community which habitually makes use of that genre. 63 For people who do not belong to the relevant speech community, this kind of knowledge is usually acquired by surveying available literature. 2. Surveying existing literature This will include, among other things, literature on: linguistic analyses of the genre/variety in question or other related or similar genres/varieties; tools, methods or theories of linguistic/discourse/genre analysis which might be relevant to this situation; practitioner advice, guide books, manuals etc.