STYLE Lecture 2 1 The notion of style The main notions Style – variation in language use, whether literary or non-literary. Register – those systemic variations in linguistic features common to particular nonliterary situation e.g., advertising, legal language, sports commentary. Style-shifting – variation of style according to medium and degree of formality. Definition Style – a distinctive set or sum of linguistic features that seem to be characteristic of register, genre or period, etc. Author’s style – the set of features, peculiar to, or characteristic of an author, his or her language habits or idiolect. Each – the same stock, but – choice! Choice in style Style – in terms of choice: the selection of features partly determined by the demands of genre, form, themes, etc. All utterances have a style, even if they might seem relatively “plain” of unmarked: a plain style is itself a style. 2. Classification of functional styles Definition of functional style Prof. V. Vinogradov’s and I. Halperin’s view: a functional style is a system of coordinated and interrelated, interconditioned language means intended to fulfill a specific function and aiming at a definite effect. Functional styles are products of a certain concrete task set by the sender of the message. appear mainly in the literary standard of a language. Taken together all the FSs make up the entire system of language: each FS = neutral language means + specific elements. Prof. Skrebnev’s view: language contains an indefinite number of sublanguages, each subL. contains all the signs of language, Each subL. consists of units of 3 classes: 1. 2. 3. but it serves a specific sphere of communication. absolutely specific units semi-specific units common (neutral) units (enter into all sublanguages). FS is the sublanguage specificity – all that is specific in a sublanguage belongs to style. The problem of classification Is the colloquial style a FS or does it belong to oral speech? Is there a specific poetic style? How many FSs are there in a language? Any classification -> simplification and is conventional and arbitrary. Changes in FSs Each FS is a relatively stable system at a given stage of the development of the language. But it changes from one period to another, influenced by changing social conditions, the progress of science and culture, the development of language. Classifications Prof. Budagov: 1. 2. the language of science + the language of emotive literature. Prof. Naer - 3 mega styles catering for: 1. 2. 3. the sphere of professional and business communication; the sphere of mass communication; the sphere of aesthetic communication. The major universally accepted FSs: 1. The language of belle-lettres 2. the language of poetry the language of emotive prose the language of drama the language of oratory the language of essays feature articles in newspapers 5. brief news items newspaper headings notices and advertisements 6. the language of the humanities; the language of the exact sciences; popular science prose. The style documents: The newspaper style The style of scientific prose: The publicistic style 3. 4. of official the language of diplomatic documents the language of legal documents the language of military documents The colloquial style - ? The style of scientific prose Scientific prose proper Popular science prose General characteristics The purpose – to prove a hypothesis, to create new concepts, to disclose laws, to describe different phenomena => the language means of the style are objective, precise, unemotional and devoid of individuality. Generalized forms of expression, new words are often coined. Lexical features the excessive use of terms; literary and neutral words mainly in their direct meanings; complete absence of standard colloquialisms, dialect, slang or vulgar words; comparatively limited vocabulary; smaller range of word-building patterns, selective use of pronouns (I – we). Terms - a word used in a branch of science in its direct referential meaning to name a certain scientific concept. Greek and Latin words and forms (datum – data, formula – formulae), abbreviations (TB), polysemantic words – avoided. Syntactic features Structures prompted strictly by logical thinking: On the one hand, … on the other hand… Firstly …, secondly … The former …, the latter … Participial constructions – before the modified word. Complex sentences prevail over compound sentences. Trends within scientific prose science prose proper all of the above popular scientific prose the author has to bring his idea home, he uses comparisons with things known to the reader, metaphors which would illustrate his point, but: their function – purely communicative. Summary The use of terms. 2. The absence of any contextual meanings. 3. The logical sequence of utterances. 4. A developed and varied system of connectives – to indicate the interrelation between sentences. 5. The use of quotations and references. 6. The frequent use of footnotes. 7. The impersonality of writing – mainly revealed in the frequent use of passive constructions. 8. The frequent use of the following words: 1. suppose, assume, presume, conclude, infer, point out, etc. The belle-lettres style • the language of poetry • the language of emotive prose • the language of drama Function Halperin: the main function – aesthetic-cognitive. The reader is made to see the writer’s vision of the world, to participate in the act of creation, to experience the pleasure derived from the form. Linguistic features 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. Genuine imagery achieved by linguistic stylistic devices. The use of words in contextual meanings. The individual choice of vocabulary – reflects the author’s personal evaluation of things. A peculiar individual selection of syntax – reflects the author’s frame of mind. The inclusion of elements from other styles, especially from the colloquial style. The language of emotive prose changes from author to author; the imagery is not so rich as it is in poetry; combination of the literary variant of the language (both in words and syntax) with the colloquial variant; two forms of communication: monologue (the writer’s speech) and dialogue (the speech of the characters). The language of drama almost entirely dialogue, but – stylized; the author’s speech – the playwright’s remarks and stage directions. 16th century plays – iambic pentameter, rhymed or unrhymed (dramatic poetry); late 18th century – revival of drama: individualization of each character’s speech , language – a stylistic type of the spoken variety. Characteristic features of drama 1) redundancy of information: the necessity to amplify the utterance for the sake of the audience; 2) the spoken language tends to curtail utterances, but – not so extensive as it is in actual dialogues; 3) 4) the monologue in plays is never interrupted; a succession of questions (never in ordinary conversation); 5) the language of plays is already purposeful (the sequence of sentences reflects the sequence of thought and is directed by the playwright). The language of poetry Classical poetry – normative, it was regulated by rigid rules: common words were banished, special lofty, elevated vocabulary was prescribed; the pronouns of the 2nd person singular (thou, thine, thyself). The language of poetry Modern poetry – nearer to colloquial speech, but – traditions in the rhythmic and phonetic arrangement of the utterance: syntax and semantics comply with the restrictions imposed by the rhythmic pattern semantics: brevity of expression, epigram-like utterances and fresh unexpected imagery; syntax: elliptical, fragmentary sentences, detached constructions, inversion, asyndeton, etc. Component patterns of rhythm 1) 2) alternation of stressed and unstressed syllables; equilinearity (equal number of syllables in each line); 3) a natural pause at the end of the line (the line – a more or less complete semantic unit); 4) 5) identity of stanza pattern; established pattern of rhyming. The language of poetry Modern versification sometimes deviates from these rules, free verse borders on prose. The most important feature of the poetic substyle – its volume of emotional colouring. Emotiveness is compressed and substantial.