Agency And Impersonality: Their Linguistic And Cultural by Mutsumi Yamamoto

By Mutsumi Yamamoto

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Extra info for Agency And Impersonality: Their Linguistic And Cultural Manifestations (Studies in Language Companion Series, Volume 78)

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In this chapter, the foci of our attention will be upon the actual linguistic manifestations of agency, which illustrate the distinct ‘mind-styles’ of language users; specifically, the styles of encoding agency in the Japanese and English languages will be contrastively analysed on the basis of statistical data, revealing the distinct mind-styles of their speakers. In Chapter 1, the point has already been made that whereas Japanese tends to ‘cover up’ agency in constructing a clause, English, as its default value, tends to articulate human agency in expressing a certain proposition, although, of course, there are plenty of cases where the English speakers/writers obfuscate agency as observed in the case of the “Quarry load-shedding problem” in Lancaster Guardian.

Klaiman 1991: 113), and they both represent a fundamental aspect of linguistic structures which are highly significant determiners of mind-style or world-view (Fowler 1977: 106). 5. In bringing this section to a finish, yet another point regarding ‘mind-style’ must be made: from a point of view of literary stylistics, it must be noted that the concept of ‘mind-style’ can be more prototypically applied to the authors’ epistemic attitudes, along with those of the characters as argued so far. g. g.

B. He drew the bow. c. He shot an arrow at the tree beside Lok with a screaming sound. Examining a little longer piece of the text than that in (5), Halliday further maintains that a human being is sometimes expressed either in terms of parts of his body or as inanimate objects (as in “A head and a chest faced him, half-hidden”), and that, of the human subjects, half are found in clauses which are not clauses of ‘action’ (1971: 349). Indeed, in the Lok language, the agent is seldom a human being (Halliday 1971: 353).

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