"Buenos dias", "buenas noches" -- this was the first words in a foreign language I heard in my life, as a three-year old boy growing up in developing post-war Western Germany, where the first gastarbeiters had arrived from Spain. Fascinated by the strange sounds, I tried to get to know some more languages, the only opportunity being TV courses of English and French -- there was no foreign language education for pre-teen school children in Germany yet in those days. Read more
To find some answers Tim Machan explores the language's present and past, and looks ahead to its futures among the one and a half billion people who speak it. His search is fascinating and important, for definitions of English have influenced education and law in many countries and helped shape the identities of those who live in them.
This volume provides a new perspective on the evolution of the special language of medicine, based on the electronic corpus of Early Modern English Medical Texts, containing over two million words of medical writing from 1500 to 1700.
EDITORS: Gee, James Paul; Handford, Michael TITLE: The Routledge Handbook of Discourse Analysis SERIES: Routledge Handbooks in Applied Linguistics PUBLISHER: Routledge YEAR: 2011
Amy Aisha Brown, International College, Ningbo University, China
The Routledge Handbook of Discourse Analysis contains an impressive 46 different contributions (47 if the editors’ introductory chapter is included) from some 59 authors. Following the Introduction, the remaining 46 contributions are divided into six loose parts. The contributions cover various aspects of Discourse Analysis (DA), including introductions to the major approaches and demonstrations of how DA is actualised in real-world contexts.
The Introduction skips a long-winded summary of the other contributions in the volume in favour of a short introduction to the basic notion of DA and an explanation of the social nature of discourse. By demonstrating the latter point, the editors highlight the relevance of DA to both linguistics and the wider social sciences, and in turn, establish the interdisciplinary approach of the volume as a whole.
Part I: Approaches to Discourse Analysis
In Chapter 1, Norman Fairclough introduces critical discourse analysis. He focuses on outlining the concepts and methodology of the particular version of critical discourse analysis he has been using in his most recent research, and by situating this within critical social analysis and arguing that this requires critical discourse analysis to be integrated within trans-disciplinary research frameworks, he immediately addresses the interdisciplinary focus of the volume noted in the editors’ introductory chapter.
In Chapter 2, Mary J. Schleppegrell provides an overview of systemic functional linguistics. She outlines the roots of systemic functional linguistics theory and notes the kinds of research questions it can be employed to answer. She then provides a synopsis of the two main branches of current research in the area, stemming from the works of Ruqaiya Hasan and J. R. Martin. She follows with an extensive survey of the contexts systemic functional linguistics has been used to explore, and then with the contributions it has made to DA.
In Chapter 3, Gunther Kress follows with calls for a more inclusive view of what is termed and analysed as discourse in his discussion of multimodal discourse analysis. His use of salient examples demonstrates what a broader interpretation of discourse can bring to DA. For example, with the simple comparison of two signs that provide directions to supermarket car parks, Kress effectively demonstrates, amongst other things, that the analysis of multiple modes is an operational means of seeing meaning beyond the obvious functionality of the signs.
In Chapter 4, Joanna Thornborrow surveys the principles, methods, and findings of narrative analysis from the fields of sociolinguistics, discourse pragmatics, and conversation analysis. Her contribution starts with a discussion of narrative as discursive activity. She then demonstrates the relevance of narrative in institutional settings with examples from TV talk shows and legal discourse, and concludes with the notion that “narrative is a primary discursive resource across many contexts for human social interaction” (p. 64).
In Chapter 5, Suzie Wong Scollon and Ingrid de Saint-Georges write about mediated discourse analysis. In a similar fashion to the preceding chapter, they introduce the concept and key studies in the area, before discussing theoretical underpinnings, the unit of analysis (social groups or classes), and their reasoning for starting analysis based on instantiations of social action. With an example of research undertaken on census enumeration, they demonstrate how analysis is undertaken through engaging with, navigating, and changing the nexus of practice.
In Chapter 6, Jay L. Lemke aims to “expand and complicate [the] sense of what is involved in discourse and multimedia analysis” (p.85). He provides a personal history of how his research into the discourse of science classrooms led him to understand that the meanings being made within them were neither limited to the texts of the classroom, nor understandable as separate from them. He aligns this with the theoretical framework of social semiotics and the idea that “all meaning making is … multimodal” (p. 82) and takes place across semiotic systems, media, and texts.
In Chapter 7, Jennifer Coates introduces gender and discourse analysis, charting how our understanding of both language and gender has changed since the feminist movement of the 1970s and how methodologies have shifted with theoretical frameworks. Looking at more recent work, she discusses how gender is understood in the prevailing paradigm of social constructionism, looks at the position of discourse in the field of queer linguistics, and examines recent work that focuses on how ideologies of gender and language feature in everyday interactions.
In Chapter 8, Jonathan Potter presents the topic of discursive psychology and discourse analysis. He outlines the field and its relation to DA and psychology in general, describes its main principles (discourse is action orientation, it is situated, and it is constructed and constructive), and its methodological procedures. He then focuses on three studies to demonstrate how discursive psychology works as an approach before concluding with a discussion of contemporary debates, situating discursive psychology in contrast to more typical approaches.
In Chapter 9, Steven E. Clayman and Virginia Teas Gill give an introduction to the methods of conversation analysis. They start by outlining how data is optimally gained, recorded, and transcribed. They then describe the process of data analysis by looking at ways into the data, ways of grounding the analysis, and ways of building a collection of cases. They conclude by acknowledging the importance of conversation analysis in applied contexts but also emphasise the importance of general research on talk in interaction that often forms the basis of the former.
In Chapter 10, Jürgen Jaspers introduces the function of DA in interactional sociolinguistics, the study of “the language of people in face-to-face interaction” (p. 135). Key studies in the area are highlighted and it is noted that a central theme has been miscommunication in western workplace settings, especially between people of different backgrounds in gatekeeping situations. He goes on to explain how interactional sociolinguistics fits into a social constructionist view of discourse and then gives a brief description of how it is carried out and of the contributions it can make.
In Chapter 11, Graham Smart introduces two traditions to discourse-oriented ethnography: interpretive ethnography and ethnography of communication. The two traditions are outlined with regard to their theoretical bases, the kinds of questions they answer and the research they produce. The chapter ends with an informative description of how Smart’s own ethnographic study of practices at the Bank of Canada evolved.
In Chapter 12, Justin B. Richland, following the work of others in the area, seeks to bring the two traditions of DA and linguistic anthropology closer together. While noting exceptions, he suggests that DA usually aims to demonstrate what language tells us about society, whilst linguistic anthropology takes the other side of the language--culture/society dialectic, looking more at what culture and society say about language. He provides an example of his own research into the legal discourses and practices of the Hopi Indian Nation in order to demonstrate how both sides of this dialectic might be given equal weighting.
In Chapter 13, Lynne Flowerdew closes the section with a discussion of corpus-based DA. She starts by noting the ontological and epistemological differences between traditional notions of corpus analysis and DA but seeks as her basis the examination of where the two have come to share common ground. She overviews three approaches to corpus-based DA: textual, critical, and contextual. To conclude, she looks at recent developments in the field, with a focus on the challenges the multi-modal view to discourse presents.
Part II: Register and genre
In Chapter 14, Douglas Biber introduces the description of register. After an initial explanation of how linguistic features, situational/contextual features, and the interrelation of these two areas are looked at when analyzing register, he discusses how corpora can be utilised in register studies. He follows with an example of the register analysis of e-mails that illustrate how situational differences (such as the relationship between participants) suggest registers within registers. He moves on to discuss register analysis at the macro level by looking at multi-dimensional studies. That is, how variation across, rather than within registers is studied through the quantitative analysis of co-occurrence patterns in corpora.
In Chapter 15, David Rose outlines the principles of the genre approach to DA of the so-called Sydney School. He begins with an outline of how context is modeled in the approach, followed by a discussion of some of the genres thus far described by it: story genres; explanations, reports and procedures; arguments; and text responses. He finishes with a brief discussion of how such research relates to genre-based pedagogy.
In Chapter 16, Charles Bazerman provides a perspective of genres as a part of social action. He focuses on the written form, suggesting that it holds little intrinsic meaning but is able to bear the weight of meaning and bring order to communication when the social action for which it is utilised is understood. Genres, it is suggested, hold an important role in this process. He discusses the typification of genre as a process of category formation, demonstrates how these categories play a role in the creation and transmission of knowledge, outlines issues of socialisation and cognitive development, and summarises implications of the perspective for DA.
In Chapter 17, Vijay Bhatia, again with a focus on writing, looks at the analysis of professional genres in the pursuit of understanding professional practice and culture. He provides an overview of research in the area but also (re)presents his multiperspective genre analytical framework as a way of expanding on traditional practice by taking into account both internal features of the text and external factors such as the socio-pragmatic space in which the texts work. The framework is illustrated with an analysis of a letter.
In Chapter 18, Almut Koester and Michael Handford present the field of spoken professional discourse. By way of introduction they outline three main approaches to analyzing genre as well as detailing some studies that have used corpus analysis in undertaking it. They then discuss ways in which genre has usefully been theorised before illustrating two contrasting approaches to spoken professional genres: genre as communicative purpose and genre as staged practice.
Part III: Developments in spoken discourse
In Chapter 19, Winnie Cheng and Pheonix Lam focus on prosody. To outline this they provide an overview of a discourse intonation model, using examples from a corpus of spoken English to illustrate the four systems of the framework: prominence, tone, key, and termination. They conclude by emphasising the situation-specific, rather than sentence-specific, nature of intonational choices speakers make, and that, while spontaneous, the patterns in these choices make its investigation valuable as a key to further understanding spoken discourse.
In Chapter 20, Paula Buttery and Michael McCarthy introduce lexis in discourse. They first establish the function of lexis in register, overviewing how corpora are used to quantitatively demonstrate differences between the spoken and written lexicon. Noting that quantitative differences in distributions “do not account for contributions of lexis to discourse” (p. 288), they discuss the notion of lexical chunks (multiword items with integrated meanings) in relation to discourse as well as the functions of lexis in the creation of cohesion in discourse.
In Chapter 21, Paul J. Hopper focuses on emergent grammar, a theory that posits that “linguistic structure is a process that unfolds in real time” (p. 301). He starts with an historical overview of the theory, explaining that emergent grammar grew out of paradoxical issues with conceiving grammar as a fixed system. This is followed by an explanation of the points in favour of viewing grammar from the emergentist’s perspective. Examples of emergent grammar are then provided followed by discussions of what the perspective has brought to light, such as the idea that traditional linguistic categories appear to be transitory, emerging from use rather than a priori. The chapter concludes by situating emergent grammar within the context of recent language theories.
In Chapter 22, Sarah Atkins and Ronald Carter examine linguistic creativity and the identification of it in everyday language. As is explained at the start of the chapter, they see creative language not only as something that resides in conventional literary domains, but as a feature of everyday, co-constructed language. Through a specific case study of the casual conversation of a group of friends, they show how the analysis of striking examples of linguistic creativity such as puns and re-formed song lyrics can shed light on the social functions of creativity.
In Chapter 23, Mary M. Juzwik discusses narrative in spoken discourse. The need to be explicit in defining the everyday term narrative is the focus of the first section, and this is highlighted again in the introduction to some methods of transcribing spoken narrative. The following sections introduce areas informing current narrative DA (literary studies, psychology, folklore and anthropology, and sociolinguistics respectively), with each section highlighting the kinds of analyses that might be undertaken with the tools of the tradition being described.
In Chapter 24, Lynne Cameron, outlines the analysis of metaphor in spoken (especially spontaneous) discourse from a discourse perspective. She provides an historical perspective of ideas about metaphor, and an extract from her data set is examined to illustrate some of the features of metaphor in spontaneous spoken discourse. A survey of issues brought to light through the analysis of linguistic metaphor is given followed by an outline of the approach and method used in some of Cameron’s recent research into social science problems.
In Chapter 25, Wallace Chafe discusses the association between sounds and thoughts. Using examples from a previous study, he explains the independence of thoughts from language, discusses evidence for the nature of thoughts, and then looks at the processes by which thoughts become semantic structures and semantic structures become syntactic. The argument presented is that the lack of one-on-one correspondence of semantic and syntactic structures means that analyses focusing on syntax alone are insufficient. The final part of the chapter discusses two areas where a move towards the author’s perspective might be beneficial.
Part IV: Educational applications
In Chapter 26, James Paul Gee opens this section with an introduction to the field of new literary studies. He starts by outlining how dissatisfaction with the idea of literacy as the knowledge of reading and writing lead to re-evaluations of it in a sociocultural light. He outlines the basic argument of new literary studies by demonstrating that reading and writing have little meaning if taken outside of the contexts in which they are used. As a means of presenting the key arguments and approaches in the field, three founding studies from the field are surveyed.
In Chapter 27, Amy B. M. Tsui follows with an account of ethnographic studies of classroom discourse. The chapter introduces ethnography and then turns to explore characteristics of the more recent practice of using ethnographic approaches to study classroom discourse. Major themes of such studies are surveyed and a number of issues (mostly methodological relating to ethnography as a whole) that need to be addressed for ethnographic studies to be viewed as significant are highlighted.
In Chapter 28, Karen Thompson and Kenji Hakuta focus on bilingual education. They introduce various issues surrounding bilingual education in the United States, India, and Guatamala respectively as a way of reminding the reader that classroom talk “is a microcosm in which societal struggles about language and national identity play out (p. 399). They discuss important theoretical frameworks that have been used for analysis in the area, with a focus on explaining the contribution DA can make as a means of connecting bilingual talk to wider socio-cultural factors, and they overview work on language, power, and code switching in bilingual education.
In Chapter 29, Ken Hyland closes the section with a discussion of DA with reference to English for academic purposes (EAP). He introduces the development, goals, and scope of teaching EAP, summarizing it as “specialized English language teaching grounded in the social, cognitive and linguistic demands of academic target situation and informed by an understanding of texts and of the constraints of academic contexts” (p. 414). The chapter explores some of the main contributions DA has made to the area of EAP, discuss Hyland’s work in this area, provides an analysis of self mention in academic texts to provide an illustrative example, and presents areas in which DA research is likely to impact on EAP in the future.
Part V: Institutional applications
In Chapter 30, Elsa Simões Lucas Freias seeks to illustrate the rewards of studying the discourse of advertisements. The chapter starts with an overview of why ads have been overlooked as a discourse type in the past and an explanation of some of the insight studying them can provide. A background to studies into advertising discourse is then provided followed by an examination of issues that arise in ad analyses, such as the problems of capturing their multimodal/multimedia nature. How such issues might be taken into account is then addressed through the analysis of a language school advertising campaign.
In Chapter 31, Anne O’Keeffe takes up the topic of media discourse. The discussion begins by outlining the nature of media discourse and the reasons why it is valuable as an object of study. The chapter progresses to discuss how print and spoken media have respectively been studied before a demonstration of the benefits of using a corpus-based approach to aid analyses, including critical discourse analyses, is provided. Considering the changes that are currently taking place in how and who dictates media, the final part of the chapter provides some ideas for a reconceptualisation of media participation frameworks.
In Chapter 32, Hiromasa Tanaka and Francesca Bargiela-Chiappini discuss the new body of research that falls under the label Asian business discourse(s) (ABDs). The chapter starts by introducing the study of business discourse before turning more specifically to characterising ABDs analysis for the reader. Drawing on research into Japanese business interaction, they survey some of the contributions ABDs and DA have made to one another, arguing, “the multi-dimensionality of ABDs requires a commensurate epistemological and methodological response” (p. 459). After further explanation of this, they provide an illustrative analysis of a Japanese business before concluding with four key issues for researchers to reflect upon.
In Chapter 33, Kevin Harvey and Svenja Adolphs engage with the interrelation between discourse and healthcare. They define health communication and provide a brief survey of significant studies in the area, noting that most research has focused on medical exchanges between professionals (usually doctors) and patients. With reference to examples, they demonstrate what analyses of such interactions can reveal about discursive practices. Prior to the concluding remarks that stress the potential for such analyses to help bring about “more equitable and humane practices in healthcare” (p. 479), the benefits of complementing more usual qualitative methods with a corpus-based approach are discussed.
In Chapter 34, Edward Finegan examines legal discourse. He starts with an explanation of the many areas that fall under the term and then, in order to demonstrate what the analysis of legal discourse can reveal about the impact such discourse has on the lives of ordinary people, he focuses on three types of it: lay litigants courtroom talk; talk from the cross-examination of a rape victim in a trial; and the discourse of appellate courts. While highlighting the social importance of such discourse, and thus its analysis, the chapter also points out some of the difficulties associated with conducting DA in the area.
In Chapter 35, Janet Holmes and Julia de Bres provide an insight into the relationship between ethnicity and humour in the workplace. They ground the discussion with an overview of research in the area of humour in the workplace, look at what falls under the term ethnic humour, discuss the small body of research that looks at ethnicity and humour in the workplace, and illustrate how a DA approach can be utilised in understanding humour in workplace contexts through their own study of discourse in a Māori workplace.
In Chapter 36, Louise Mullany concludes the section with a consideration of approaches to studying gender and discourse in professional communication as a means of explaining gender-based social or political problems. She underlines some of the issues that have been the focus of previous research and explains key theoretical concepts. Utilising examples from her own and additional research, Mullany demonstrates how the aforementioned theoretical concepts and approaches play out in analyses and what such analyses can illuminate.
Part VI: Identity, culture and discourse
In Chapter 37, Ruth Wodak starts the section by introducing political discourse. She briefly outlines significant issues in studies of politics and/in politics before delineating the one aspect of political discourse practice that she focuses on in the chapter, the day-to-day activities of politicians in the various institutions in which they work. A discussion of relevant approaches to studying the area is presented before Wodak puts forward an illustrated example of her own integrated approach to the study of behind-the-scenes politics, which takes from various other approaches such as the critical discourse studies related discourse historical approach.
In Chapter 38, Yueguo Gu contends with discourse geography, which is the study of the interplay between discourse (as language-in-action), and space and time. The focus of the chapter is on land-borne situated discourse, and this and other salient terms are defined before the ways in which space and time have featured in previous linguistics research is outlined. The main body of the chapter seeks to summarise land-borne situated discourse and human spatial-temporal behaviour from the viewpoint of individual actors and from the system’s or collective standpoint, respectively.
In Chapter 39, William L. Leap turns to highlighting contributions queer linguistics-based analyses of sexuality and related issues can make. The chapter offers a brief introduction to the field of queer linguistics, before an example from the author’s study of Cape Town’s sexual geography is used to demonstrate that texts need to be read not only with issues of sexuality in mind, but also with consideration to how those issues interplay with broader discursive practices and power structures. Projects using queer linguistics-based approaches are surveyed and the some of the understandings gained from them are highlighted.
In Chapter 40, Helen Spencer-Oatey, Hale Işik-Güler, and Stefanie Stadler discuss issues related to intercultural communication. The first section focuses on message construction between interlocutors in intercultural discourse, the second section turns to the management of rapport in intercultural interaction, and the third part focuses on ways identity and intercultural discourse are theorised. The chapter ends with a call for more cross-disciplinary work, a greater focus on the nature of successful rather than problematic interaction, and more close corroboration with professionals to increase insights and social relevance of intercultural communication research.
In Chapter 41, Teun A. van Dijk discusses the relationship between discourse and knowledge. He summarises properties of knowledge relevant to the sociocognitive theory of natural knowledge the chapter outlines and provides a brief explanation of the theoretical notions of mental and context models, and a digest of the strategies involved in discourse construction and comprehension highlights the importance of contextual knowledge. The pervasiveness of knowledge in discourse structures, production and comprehension is then demonstrated through an epistemic analysis of Presidents Obama’s inaugural speech.
In Chapter 42, David R. Olson argues for a reinstatement of narrative to a place of prestige in the human sciences in his discussion of the relationship between narrative, cognition, and rationality. After introducing basic concepts, the remainder of the chapter focuses on the contrast between narrative and paradigmatic discourse, with a basis in the claim that different modes of discourse require distinct modes of thought, and that rationality need to be reconceptualised through a recognition of these distinctive modes. Flaws in the way rationality has been conceived in previous research are established before a discourse model of reasoning is presented.
In Chapter 43, Adrian Blackledge’s contribution contends with the theme of discourse and power. The chapter first surveys important studies in the area, focusing particularly on critical discourse analysis and the ways it and other discourse and power research has been critiqued. Linguistic ethnographic approaches and how notions of voice have been utilised in recent discourse and power research are also discussed. Putting voice at the fore of discourse and power investigations is proposed as a means of moving analyses of discourse and power forward. The analysis of a section of classroom discourse is provided as an illustration.
In Chapter 44, Peter K. W. Tan’s discussion of literary discourse is based around a series of questions. The first question deals with whether there is any such thing as literary language. The second question contends with literary discourse from the viewpoint of fictionality, questioning whether literary texts present different discourse situations. The remainder of the chapter then discusses the possibility that different literary genres may require different approaches, asks which DA approaches are useful for their analysis, and concludes by pointing to areas of literary DA that are likely to receive more attention in the future.
In Chapter 45, Shi-xu takes the perspective that current trends towards discourse studies lauding multi-disciplinary standpoints largely fail to attend to issues of cultural context and uses the chapter to outline a multicultural approach to discourse studies. The cultural nature of critical discourse studies is examined, followed by an argument for an alternative view to knowledge construction and an explanation of some of the implications for the multicultural researcher and the resultant theory. The chapter closes by outlining some strategies researchers can use to put the alternative system into practice.
In Chapter 46, Andy Kirkpatrick and James McLellan provide a comparative discussion of world English and English as a lingua franca. To start, they posit three hypotheses along the following lines: 1) any variety of world English will have specific characteristics that tie it to the particular environment from which it arises, 2) lingua franca English, being primarily a common communication medium, will involve fewer culturally specific references, and 3) successful communication does not depend on adherence to notions of standardised native-speaker norms. With analyses of authentic texts from world Englishes and lingua franca encounters, the authors outline and illustrate the respective areas of world Englishes and lingua franca English, and test the hypotheses presented at the start of the chapter.
Although there is any number of books on DA, there can be little doubt that this volume is still an important contribution to the field because, in just one volume, it manages to provide an up-to-date coverage of a vast range of work from the perspectives of some of the most highly influential researchers in the field. It also adds to the existing body of literature on DA in that it takes a more inclusive view as to what falls beneath the DA umbrella. For example, the multimodal nature of discourse(s) and the need for it to be recognised in DA is a recurring theme in the volume, as is the benefit of taking a combination of micro-level linguistic data as well as macro-level contextual information into account.
While no one short contribution can be expected to provide a great deal of depth, another important feature of this volume is the breadth of contributions, resulting in a well-rounded view of DA studies. For example, the benefits of a multi-disciplinary approach are lauded in a number of chapters, but an interesting challenge to the status quo is presented by Shi-xu in Chapter 45. Contributions such as Tsui’s (Chapter 27), which problematizes the ethnographic approaches under discussion, also assist in making this a well-balanced volume. The inclusion of lists and explanations of other works the reader may wish to consult in every chapter as well as cross-references to other chapters by some authors, also makes the book a valuable stepping stone to the other important works in DA.
In one way, however, the volume could be criticised for a lack of consistency across the contributions. Take Part 1, for instance. All of the contributions introduce approaches to DA but they are undertaken in some very different ways. Schleppegrell (Chapter 2), for example, takes a traditional, literature review-style approach to outlining systemic functional linguistics. On the other hand, Fairclough (Chapter 1) provides a very personal view in his introduction of critical discourse analysis, he does not provide a general outline of the field but focuses on his own, most recent variant of it and how it is operationalised within his own research. Lemke (Chapter 6) provides a very different kind of contribution still. He continues the personal emphasis found in Fairclough’s contribution, but calls for a reconceptualisation of multimedia and DA with the utilisation of his own tale of how he came to the field, which stemmed from his curiosity as to how ideas w途中ere transmitted whilst a junior researcher in theoretical physics. This variety in style makes for interesting reading, and each contribution is easily understood without much reference to the rest of the volume needed; however, with no prior introduction to each contribution, either by the editors or through abstracts, for those only seeking to look into certain topics it might be difficult to find relevant chapters with only chapter titles and the index as a guide. This problem is amplified by the lack of comprehensive introductory sections in some of the chapters. The most obvious example of this is probably Lemke’s contribution (discussed above) because it is not until his journey has been detailed that that the real connection to the chapter title becomes apparent, and yet the problem raises its head in a number of other chapters, many of which introduce the field they are writing about but fail to detail what will be discussed in the remainder of the chapter (Jaspers (Chapter 10), Bazerman (Chapter 16), and Finegan (Chapter 34) being just some examples of this). The opportunity to link between chapters was also taken up by fewer authors than one might wish.
The lack of explanation of key terms is also something that could be rectified in future editions. The issue is nowhere more evident than in the absence of any introductory discussion of the fundamental notion of discourse itself. A number of contributors do discuss the fact that discourse can be understood in different ways or usefully explain what they mean by the term. However, given the multitude of ways it is used in different contexts, across different disciplines, and across contributions in the volume, it seems logical that this is a term that should be explored, especially if this book is to be accessible to the wide audience the editors intend. In the case of discourse, this issue could be addresses with a fuller explanation in the Introduction (see Schiffrin, Tannen & Hamilton’s (2003) introduction to a similar volume), while for other terms, the inclusion of a glossary as a complement to the index would be helpful.
Despite the issues outlined above, there is little doubt that the volume will be of use for both students and researchers alike. For those new to DA, the variety of approaches and applications discussed should help the researcher better understand approaches to DA and how they might be useful in specific contexts. Moreover, because of the wide variety of outlooks presented, and the inclusion of remodelled approaches, new research, and arguments for more traditional approaches to be modified, there are likely to be interesting discoveries to be made for even those with a strong background in DA.
Schiffrin, Deborah, Deborah Tannen & Heidi E. Hamilton (eds.). 2003. The Handbook of Discourse Analysis. Malden, MA: Wiley-Blackwell.
ABOUT THE REVIEWER:
ABOUT THE REVIEWER
Amy Aisha Brown studied Applied Linguistics at the University of Nottingham
Ningbo, China and she is currently teaching in the International College of
Ningbo University, China. Her main interest is in the analysis of discourse
in the service of understanding the sociolinguistics of English in the