Series:

Magnus Ljung

Abstract

This paper attempts to demonstrate how lexis may contribute to our understanding of genre differences.The argument is based on the statistically significant lexical differences between genres that were established by the Keywords program in the WordSmith software package. Five newspaper genres were selected for analysis, i.e. hard news, sports news, business news, arts articles, and obituaries. The data was taken from the same five weekdays in the CDROM-based 1997 issues of The Times and The New York Times. The days were selected by stratified sampling.

The program compared the vocabulary in the five genres in each paper with a larger reference file (FLOB and Frown respectively) and assigned a ‘keyness’ value to the words in each genre indicating to what extent their use differed from that in the reference file.

The comparison showed that differences in word use signal genre differences within at least four textual parameters, i.e. topic, communicative function, communicative purpose, and formality. It also turned out that keyness values for the top American keywords were consistently much higher than for the top British keywords. It seems in other words that The New York Times uses a vocabulary further removed from standard American usage than The Times with respect to standard British usage.

Series:

Magnus Ljung

Abstract

This paper is a study of the functions of ten common expletive interjections in a 1 million-word sub-corpus from the spoken component of the BNC. The findings indicate that about a hundred interjections function as release mechanisms for mostly negative feelings triggered by real-world experiences. The rest are shown to be pragmatic markers as these have been defined in the recent literature and are analysed mainly in terms of the discourse-based analytic model used in Stenström (1994).

Corpus Based Studies in English

Papers from the seventeenth International Conference on English Language Research on Computerized Corpora (ICAME 17)

Series:

Edited by Magnus Ljung

Corpus-based Studies in English contains selected papers from the seventeenth International Conference on English Language Research on Computerized Corpora (ICAME 17). The topics include parsing and annotation of corpora, discourse studies, lexicography, translation studies, parallel corpora, language variation and change, national varieties, methodology and English language teaching. The papers on parsing and annotation include discussions of the treatment of irregular forms, semantic/pragmatic labels in air traffic control, a comparison of tagging systems and a presentation of T-tag lexicon construction.
The papers on discourse and lexicography include a study of like as a discourse marker, thesaural relations and the lexicalisation of NPs. In translation studies one paper discusses explicitness as a universal feature of translation and the paper on parallel corpora contrasts English and Norwegian. Many papers deal with variation and change; here we find a discussions of dialogue vs. non-dialogue in modern English fiction and an account of verbal disputes in adolescent English; the historical studies deal with e.g. text type evolution, multi-verb words, normalization in Middle English prose and modalities in Early Modern English. The methodology papers discuss the use in corpus analysis of inferential statistics, probabilistic approaches to anaphora resolution and multi-method approaches to data. The ELT paper compares the use of the progressive in native and non-native compositions.