Text Properties

Topics: Denotation, Connotation, Philosophy of language Pages: 10 (2977 words) Published: April 25, 2013
Молчанова Г.Г. Английский как не родной: тест, стиль, культура, коммунакация.Учебное пособие. – М.: ОЛМА Медиа Групп, 2007. – 384 с.

Key Theme:

3.7. The Main Text Properties

3.7.1. Informativity of a Text

Informativity of a text is its ability to convey the information, i. e. certain meaningful contents. The value of the received information is a problem of discussion. It is known that information, being repeated or redundant, loses its value and as a result ceases to be informative. But it is also known that some texts have unchangeable value. Being the permanent source of the new aesthetic or cognitive, scientific emotions, they always remain in a treasury of human culture. According to I. R. Galperin (Гальперин, 1981), we can distinguish the following types of information in a literary text: a) content — factual (explicit) (reporting about facts, events or processes taking place in the real or imaginary surrounding world); b) content — conceptual, c) content — subtextual (implicit).

3.7.2. Implicitness of a Text

Language has two forms of expressing thoughts: explicit and implicit. The explicit is a superficial, evident line of expressing a thought, while the implicit is a concealed, hidden line which has to be inferred in the process of reading and understanding of the text. The implicit level has its own structural unit — an implicate. The most wide-spread types of implicates one can distinguish the following: 1. An Implicit Title. It expresses in a concentrated form the message or theme of a literary text and requires for its realization the macrocontext of the whole work. 2. An Implicit Detail. It suggests additional deep-lying meaning and create implicit subtext information, which is sometimes the most important factor of revealing the m e s a g e of the author. Implicit details may be further classed into: a) Depicting details, used for creation the visual image of nature or appearance of a character. b) Characterological details, which reveal the personage's psychological qualities, individual traits and habits, underlining the most essential features. E.g. Fabian always left very big tips for waiters. Or: It pleased her to be seen in the dress circle even with Andrew.

Problem Question:

What implicit details and stylistic devices are used in the following passage? What additional information about the act of communication and its participants is conveyed by them?

She introduced me to Colonel Aspinwall, an elderly man with an English accent, an English suit, and a young English wife who looked me over and found me socially undesirable. To Dr. Jan Innes, a cigar-chomping thick-jowled man, whose surgical eyes seemed to be examining me for symptoms. To Mrs. Innes, who was pale and tense and fluttering like a patient. To Jeremy Rader, the artist tall and hairy and jovial in the last late flush of his youth. To Molly Rader, statuesque brunnette of about 39, who was the most beautiful thing I'd seen in weeks... And to Arthur Planter, an art collector so well-known that I had heard of him.

MacDonald, 1979

3.7.3. Composition of a Text

The literary text is a complex whole, the elements of it are arranged according to a definite system and in special succession. This kind of complex organization of a text, its construction is called composition. Text composition is stipulated by its contents, it reflects the complexity of life phenomena depicted in a text. Composition of a literary text depends on its plot. Plot is a scheme of connected events comprising the main stages in the development of conflicts and revealing principle traits of people through their actions. The plot as any relatively completed moment of life process has a beginning, development and ending. The point of departure for a plot organization is an exposition (= setting) — an outline of the environment, circumstances and conditions of the described events. The author may give no exposition at the beginning but hold it...
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