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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 legal discourse

Stylistics of legal discourse

(p.58) Chapter 4 Stylistics of legal discourse
The Stylistics of Professional Discourse

Martin Solly

Edinburgh University Press

This chapter concentrates on stylistics in legal texts and contexts; since well-chosen language can determine the successive jurisprudence of a particular area of the law, the use of legal language has its own particularities and responsibilities. First, the chapter draws attention to certain aspects and areas of the language of the law: the importance of legal contexts and settings (for example, the courtroom); forensic linguistics; the different kinds of legal texts, including statutes and witness evidence in the courtroom; some typical features of legal language (such as repetition, vagueness and precision); the formulation of legal concepts and culture-bound legal concepts. Then, focusing on the normative and intercultural dimensions of the language of statutes and the language of the courtroom, the chapter examines various stylistic aspects underpinning the successful deployment of legal discourse. These include some of the typical stylistic features of the language of the law, such as sentence structure, choice of lexis and the various kinds of repetition and word doublings.

Keywords:   language of the law, legal settings, forensic linguistics, courtroom discourse, repetition, word-doubling

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