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Signalling Nouns in English
A Corpus-Based Discourse Approach

$36.99 (C)

Part of Studies in English Language

  • Date Published: May 2017
  • availability: Available
  • format: Paperback
  • isbn: 9781108403894

$ 36.99 (C)

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About the Authors
  • Signalling nouns (SNs) are abstract nouns like 'fact', 'idea', 'problem' and 'result', which are non-specific in their meaning when considered in isolation and specific in their meaning by reference to their linguistic context. SNs contribute to cohesion and evaluation in discourse. This work offers the first book-length study of the SN phenomenon to treat the functional and discourse features of the category as primary. Using a balanced corpus of authentic data, the book explores the lexicogrammatical and discourse features of SNs in academic journal articles, textbooks, and lectures across a range of disciplines in the natural and social sciences. The book will be essential reading for researchers and advanced students of semantics, syntax, corpus linguistics and discourse analysis, in addition to scholars and teachers in the field of English for academic purposes.

    • Takes discourse and functional features seriously
    • Data is corpus-based, which will appeal to readers seeking empirical studies of authentic data
    • Based on the study of academic writing and speech, it is useful for teachers, scholars and materials developers in English for academic purposes
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    Reviews & endorsements

    "Powerfully evidenced throughout with reference to a wide range of corpus sources, this is a very richly textured book of singular importance to our understanding of a core feature of discourse organisation, extending previous work with real insight and originality."
    Ronald Carter, University of Nottingham

    "This corpus-based description of the grammatical and discourse features of signaling nouns provides important insights into their use, and makes a critical contribution to exploring cohesion and coherence in texts. It’s well worth reading!"
    Peter H. Fries, Professor Emeritus, Central Michigan University

    'This book will be a valuable reference to those who are interested in the systematic functions of nouns and language educators within academic writing and reading.' Kevin Jiang, Functions of Language

    'This book is a welcome addition to Cambridge University Press’s excellent Studies in English Language series. For John Flowerdew it represents the culmination of work on a set of nouns that he first identified and named in 1994 and on which, often with Ph.D. students and other research associates, he has been working ever since.' Susan Hunston, English Language and Linguistics

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    Product details

    • Date Published: May 2017
    • format: Paperback
    • isbn: 9781108403894
    • length: 304 pages
    • dimensions: 230 x 153 x 15 mm
    • weight: 0.45kg
    • contains: 1 b/w illus. 85 tables
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    1. Introduction
    2. Grammatical features of signalling nouns
    3. Semantic features
    4. Discourse features
    5. Criteria for determining what constitutes a signalling noun in this study
    6. Corpus, methodology, annotation system, and reporting of the data
    7. Set of examples
    8. Overview of signalling noun distributions in the corpus
    9. Overview of semantic categories
    10. Overview of lexicogrammatical and discourse pattern frequencies
    11. Conclusion
    Appendix A. The overall structure of the corpus
    Appendix B. List of texts that make up the corpus
    Appendix C. Lemmatised SNs in descending order according to normalised frequency
    Appendix D. Non-lemmatised SNs in descending order according to normalised frequency
    Appendix E. Lemmatised SNs in alphabetical order
    Appendix F. Non-lemmatised SNs in alphabetical order
    Appendix G. Frequency of SNs in different semantic categories.

  • Authors

    John Flowerdew, City University of Hong Kong
    John Flowerdew is a Professor in the Department of English at City University of Hong Kong.

    Richard W. Forest, Central Michigan University
    Richard W. Forest is an Assistant Professor in the Department of English Language and Literature at Central Michigan University.

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