Presented Discourse in Popular Science

Professional Voices in Books for Lay Audiences


In Presented Discourse in Popular Science, Olga A. Pilkington explores the forms and functions of the voices of scientists in books written for non-professionals. This study confirms the importance of considering presentation of discourse outside of literary fiction: popular science uses presented discourse in ways uncommon for fiction yet not conventional for non-fiction either.

This analysis is an acknowledgement of the social consequences of popularization. Discourse presentation of scientists reconstructs the world of the scientific community as a human space but also projects back into it an image of the scientist the public wants to see. At the same time, Pilkington’s findings strengthen the view of popularization that rejects the notion of a strict divide between professional and popular science.

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Biographical Note
Olga A. Pilkington, Ph.D. (2016), University of Birmingham (UK), is Assistant Professor of English at Dixie State University (USA). She is co-editor of Lab Lit: Exploring Literary Fictions about Science.
Table of contents
< Preface Acknowledgements List of Tables List of Abbreviations
1 Introduction: Popular Science, Overview of the GenreWhy Popular Science is Important and How It Shapes the Reader’s Perception of the Scientific CommunityHistory of Popular ScienceA Genre with an AgendaConclusion
2 Theoretical PerspectivesPresented Discourse: An Overview of Analytical ApproachesFictionality: Questions about DefinitionThe Importance of Emotionality in Popular ScienceDramatization, Emotionality, and Professional ScienceConclusion
3 Analytical Background, Framework, Texts, and MethodsIntroductionGeneral Role of Discourse Presentation in Fiction and Non-fictionThe Framework for Presented Discourse Analysis of the Popular Science CorpusCorpus Selection and MethodologyComparison of Frequency Information for the Popular Science Corpus with the Semino and Short FindingsConclusion
4 Dramatization in the Narratives of Discovery: The Roles of Communicated Discourse and Thought PresentationIntroductionDramatization in Presented Discourse: It is Not Just (F)DSDramatization through IS and FIS: Emotionality and DialogueConclusion
5 Beyond DramatizationIntroductionHypotheses and Discoveries: Presentation of Thought is Not so PrivateNon-dramatizing Communicated Discourse: Explanation of ScienceConclusion
6 Presented Discourse outside the Narratives of DiscoveryIntroductionCelebratory DiscourseSpeech Presentation versus Writing Presentation: Another LookConfirming the Fusion of Non-fiction and Fiction-Like Qualities of Presented Discourse in Popular ScienceThe Fictionalized Reader in Popular ScienceConclusion
7 ConclusionThe Role of Presented Discourse in the Formation of Positive Bias
Appendix: Practical Applications of Research Findings Bibliography Index
All interested in popular science writing, as well as everyone interested in the functions of presented discourse in general; anyone concerned with narratology and the study of fictionality in non-fiction.
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