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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 educational discourse

Stylistics of educational discourse

(p.81) Chapter 5 Stylistics of educational discourse
The Stylistics of Professional Discourse

Martin Solly

Edinburgh University Press

This chapter focuses on some of the ideas currently underpinning notions of education in order to show how they drive contemporary educational discourse, and also on how the language choice plays a determining role in in the construction and negotiation of ‘new’ educational identities. It then exemplifies three different kinds of educational discourse. First, the language of education provides the contextual framework to reveal how the language choice and narrative patterns in the discourse of educational reform in the area of language learning policy in UK and European contexts reflect the need to face, or to appear to be facing, changing social situations and educational requirements. Second, the chapter provides an analysis of the language of primary school job adverts in the United Kingdom to show how the educational job ads, as well as using a range of stylistic techniques to attract and recruit potential teachers, also serve to define an individual school’s identity and project it to the outside world. Finally, the chapter looks at the language of commencement speeches in North American universities and the ways stylistic analysis can be used to describe the main features of the texts in relation to their contexts and rhetorical purposes. The aim throughout is to show how a stylistically oriented approach can provide a useful lens for practitioners and others interested in examining the discourse of this professional domain.

Keywords:   educational discourse, narrative patterns, language learning reform, constructing and negotiating identity, job ads, commencement speeches

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