Discipline and genre in academic discourse: Prepositional Phrases as a focus

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Journal of Pragmatics, ISSN: 0378-2166

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Fatma Benelhadj
Elsevier BV
Arts and Humanities; Social Sciences; Computer Science
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article description
Academic discourse is characterised by being ‘enormously diverse’ (Hyland, 2004) because of its different disciplines and genres. Authors of academic texts are influenced by their disciplines, and by the ‘discourse formats’ (Fløttum et al., 2006) of what they are writing. However, genres exist across disciplines. For instance, research articles and PhD theses are found in different disciplines, namely medicine and sociology. Added to that, Systemic Functional Linguistics proposes that lexicogrammatical choices are activated by the context, which is, in this case, multiple. This paper seeks to study how the different parameters of context might influence the choices of PPs. A corpus of PhD theses and research articles from medicine and sociology is collected, and a sample is extracted and annotated via CorpusTool. The result revealed that certain choices reveal that while research articles are more similar across the disciplines, PhD theses are less restricted and disciplinary and personal differences are prominent.