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The Stylistics of Professional Discourse$
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Martin Solly

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780748691692

Published to Edinburgh Scholarship Online: September 2016

DOI: 10.3366/edinburgh/9780748691692.001.0001

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Stylistics of healthcare discourse

Stylistics of healthcare discourse

(p.37) Chapter 3 Stylistics of healthcare discourse
The Stylistics of Professional Discourse

Martin Solly

Edinburgh University Press

This chapter looks at the language of medicine, at communication in the various spheres of healthcare, and more specifically at the use of language in these settings. The first part outlines the current state of healthcare communication, highlighting some of its key features: the impact of the new technological affordances, the mobility of healthcare professionals, the tension between tradition and innovation, the issue of health literacy. Healthcare professionals are expert insiders and their language choice can depend on the different communicative situations and contexts. Moreover, there are different medical text types and different levels of discourse. The chapter then focuses on some more specific aspects of language choice and communication in healthcare, examining the stylistic features of a number of healthcare texts, such as patient information leaflets, and the importance of case studies in medical discourse. Finally, it presents an analysis of how opposition, for example the risk vs. protection antithesis, is used in international healthcare insurance discourse.

Keywords:   language of medicine, healthcare literacy, case studies, patient information leaflets, medical text types, international mobility

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