Evaluation in business discourse
Magocha, Keoneng Know
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The aim of the thesis is to explore, from a linguistic perspective, the construction and maintenance of interaction in documents in which directives are conveyed in business communication correspondence, in order to input directly into the pedagogic practice in written business communication. The focus is research into ways of scaffolding relationships in documents for correspondence, an area that represents an important aspect of language use in business communication practice. The data for the study includes letters, memoranda and saving rams in which directives are conveyed written by writers of English as a second language and following various channels of communication. Two methods are used to extract the relevant data in which evaluative meanings are conveyed. These are Wordsmith to extract evaluative and patterns and a manual analysis to identify the evaluative structures of the texts. The linguistic construal of interpersonal scaffolding is investigated drawing on the model of APPRAISAL (Martin, 2000), which is located within the Hallidayan grammar as the theoretical point of departure. The choice of language used in the texts is interrogated and interpreted with reference to the theory. analysis focuses on the linguistic systems that appropriately serve or construe the interactive function of language and addresses issues such as kinds of semantic values that are conveyed, the patterns in which they are expressed and their texture. The objective is not to make generalizations about how writers of documents manage interaction and persuade their recipients to carry out the actions they desire. Rather the aim is to develop a theoretical framework to explain the evaluative strategies that are encoded in the texts and the implications of choosing amongst different strategies. The thesis therefore contributes a theoretically motivated and dynamic explanation of the ways in which interaction is managed in the context of texts in which directives are communicated especially amongst Batswana writing in the English language. From a pedagogic perspective the explanations of managing interaction developed in the study provide insights and resources for teachers of business communication writing to assist them in modelling evaluative strategies in business correspondence writing and helping their students to develop effective written communication strategies.
- Humanities