Letter Writing as an Interdiscursive Genre

Essay by dovesnake2College, UndergraduateA+, November 2006

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* A Critical Introduction

- The main paradigm in discourse analysis and sociolinguistics has been to view the oral and literate in terms of a bifurcation . The present study explores the interrelation between the two discourse genres . It attempts to show that features that are typical of both speaking and writing are deployed in the discourse of letters Thus, this study complements and supplements Negm ( 1995 ) .

- Whereas Negm ( 1995 ) examines an oral genre to point out features of writing that surface in it, Negm ( 1996 ) marks features of orality in a chirographically-based genre .

- Frawley sees orality and literacy as a gradiance . Hence, he traces the evolution of the non-textual into textual and finally into the intertext .

- Murray ( 1988 ) has demonstrated that oral defenses of dissertations, although spoken, may be " highly integrated and personal " .

Similarly, Tannen ( 1985 ) analysed written discourse with a view to investigating closely the " mixing of oral and literate strategies in written narrative showing that written discourse can be based on features previously associated with spoken discourse ". And finally, Tannen ( 1989 ) examines the link between literary and spoken language . She exhibits that strategies such as repetition, imagery, and quoted dialogue are employed in everyday conversation .

- Ehri ( 1985 ) broadened the spectrum of the interrelation between the two modes by exploring it in a pedagogical framework . Ehri concludes that written language "supplies a visual spatial model for speech and that when children learn to read and spell, this model and its symbols are internalized as a representational system in memory ".

- Read ( 1985 ) exhibits the complex interaction between phonetics, phonology, and orthography that influences children's...