Pragmatic dimensions in stylistic analysis

Source document: Brno studies in English. 2008, vol. 33, iss. 1, pp. [91]-100
Extent
[91]-100
  • ISSN
    1211-1791
Type: Article
Language
English
License: Not specified license
Abstract(s)
The present paper deals with a pragmatic model of meaning as applicable in stylistic analysis and some other concepts traditionally dealt with in pragmatics. We shall view the process of stylistic analysis as a multi-level procedure emphasizing the connections between semantic and pragmatic aspects of the text. In this respect we attempt to view the text as discourse between the writer and the reader and thus our analysis also provides comments on specific discourse characteristics. Exploring the stylistic means of the short story we focus on the study of the phenomenon known as foregrounding and the quality of openness in text. In English stylistics foregrounding (as an opposite pole to backgrounding) is an important concept while openness is a crucial text quality studied in text linguistics. Foregrounding and openness may seem to be quite different in nature; however, we shall see that they can overlap in many aspects. This paper aims to reveal the significance of the above indicated aspects of style and discourse in the process of reading, analysing and understanding texts. A sample analysis of Doris Lessing's short story In Defence of the Underground is intended to illustrate the presented theoretical approach.
Document
References:
[1] Cruse, D. Alan (2000) Meaning in Language. An Introduction to Semantics and Pragmatics. Oxford: OUP.

[2] Fowler, Roger (1986) Linguistic Criticism. Oxford: OUP.

[3] Leech, Geoffrey (1969) A Linguistic Guide to English Poetry. Burnt Mill, Harlow: Longman.

[4] Lessing, Doris (1993) 'In Defence of the Underground'. London Observed. Stories and Sketches. London: Hammersmith.

[5] Miššíková, Gabriela (1999) Štylistická analýza textu. Na materiáli anglického jazyka. Nitra: FF UKF.

[6] Short, Mick (1997) Exploring the Language of Poems, Plays and Prose. London: Longman.

[7] Urbanová, Ludmila and Oakland, Andrew (2003) Úvod do anglické stylistiky. Brno: Barrister & Principal.

[8] Van Peer, Willie (1989) 'How to Do Things with Texts: Towards a Pragmatic Foundation for the Teaching of Texts'. Reading, Analysing & Teaching Literature. London: Longman.

[9] Verdonk, Peter, and Jean Jacques Weber (eds) (1995) Twentieth-Century Fiction. From Text to Context. London: Routledge.