Author: Aunty Muriel

Contextual frame theory and Shirley Jackson’s ‘A Visit’ 

Contextual frame theory explains ‘how readers track reference to characters and events through the process of reading’ (Stockwell, 2002: 155). To summarise the essence of this approach, the reader constructs mental images, or ‘contextual frames’, containing characters and objects which are said to be ‘bound’ to that frame. The binding process enables the reader to…

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The role of the reader

i) Introductory In this final chapter I wish to focus entirely on the reader and the reader’s role in relation to the various levels of discourse existing in a text.  The factors affecting the reader’s understanding of the text can be roughly organised into three categories as follows.  Firstly, the organisation of the text or…

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Point of view, transitivity and modality in ‘The Yellow Wall-Paper’

i) Introductory In this chapter I provide an overview of recent developments in the stylistic approach to the study of fictional point of view.  I have explored in turn the four basic linguistic categories relating to point of view: these are spatial, temporal, psychological and ideological.  In discussing temporal point of view, I have made…

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Foregrounding in ‘Gormenghast’ and ‘Wuthering Heights’

i) The Background to Foregrounding Jan Mukařovský, one of the founding members of the Prague Linguistic Circle, explores the concept of foregrounding (aktualisace) in a paper entitled ‘Standard Language and Poetic Language’.[1]  Mukařovský is never in any doubt that there is a distinction to be made between ‘standard’ language and ‘poetic’ language, and he writes…

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What is stylistics?

i) What is stylistics? Modern stylistics has existed in one form or another since Charles Bally coined the term stylistique in 1909, but its roots arguably lie ‘in the elocutio of Aristotelian rhetorical studies’.[1]  In spite of its longevity, however, stylistics as a discipline continues to resist definition, owing perhaps to its restless absorption of…

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