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A Contrastive Analysis of Hedges and Boosters in English Economic Newsby Chinese and Western Writers

论文作者:www.51lunwen.org论文属性:硕士毕业论文 thesis登出时间:2014-03-27编辑:hynh1021点击率:9148

论文字数:43260论文编号:org201403201757573791语种:英语 English地区:中国价格:$ 66

关键词:模糊限制语增强语英语新闻对比分析contrastive analysis


Chapter One Introduction

1.1 Background of the Study

Vagueness, as an intrinsic property of natural language, exists prevailingly in alllanguage forms. In 1965, professor Zadeh first proposed the fuzzy set theory. Based onhis work, American cognitive linguist G. Lakoff came up with the concept of hedges in1972. Since then, growing attention has been focused on the research into hedgingdevices. While Lakoff’s definition of hedges stays at the semantic level, studies ofhedges in the 1980s were carried out from the perspective of pragmatics,sociolinguistics and discourse analysis. Hedges are words or expressions employed bywriters when they feel uncertain about the truth of a proposition or statement.The study of hedges has been a hot field for scholars at home and abroad. In theopinion of Hubler (1983), by using hedges, writers can make sentences moreacceptable to the readers and thus increase their chances of ratification. Fraser (1990)saw hedges as a discourse marker which enables the speaker to attenuate the force of hisspeech and show politeness. Brown and Levinson (1987) stated that hedges can betapped as a negative politeness strategy to avoid disagreement and save face. In China,professor Wu Tieping is a pioneer in the study of fuzzy language. He introduced thevagueness phenomena in the Chinese language and classified hedges grammatically.Chen Yide (2000) analyzed the pragmatic functions of hedges in verbal communication.Other scholars, including Li Zhian (1999), Yang Yujun (2002) and Ying Lihong (2009)employed the cooperative principle and politeness principle to study hedges. CaiLongquan and Dai Weidong (2002) proved that hedges can upgrade the speaker’scommitment to the truth value of his speech in the light of speech act theory,cooperative principle and adaptation theory. In Li Fuying’s study (1995) from thesociolinguistic perspective, the use of hedges can be affected by gender, power (socialstatus) and profession.In recent years, researchers continuingly focus their attention on the studies of

hedges in different genres, including academic discourse, literary works, businessnegotiation, political debates, advertisements, news, etc. Also, a growing number ofresearches have been made to discuss the cross-cultural or cross-disciplinarydifferences in the use of hedges, most of which are corpus-based empirical studies.However, the linguistic counterpart of hedges, that is, boosters, has not receiveddue attention. Boosters, such as definitely, of course, we firmly believe, refer to lexicalitems used by writers to show strong conviction for a statement (Holmes, 1982).According to Holmes (1984), boosters can increase the illocutionary force of thespeech act. Hyland (1998) made a comparative study of boosters used in researcharticles from different disciplines. However, compared to hedges, the researches onboosters are still very limited.News report, as a means of mass media, offers an important source of informationfor readers or audience. Hedges and boosters are frequently used by news writers tocommunicate their epistemic stances. This thesis attempts to provide a contrastivestudy of hedges and boosters in native and non-native English economic news (EEN).By investigating the frequency, types and distribution of hedges and boosters in theselected English news reports written by Chinese and British journalists respectively,this thesis aims to find out the similarities an论文英语论文网提供整理,提供论文代写英语论文代写代写论文代写英语论文代写留学生论文代写英文论文留学生论文代写相关核心关键词搜索。

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