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留学生英语语言学论文范文:MA Modern English Lang

MA Modern English Language

Speech Representation in Written News Reports

In her paper On reporting reporting: the representation of speech in facutual and fictional narratives (1994) Carmen Rosa Caldas- Coulthard analyses how speech is 留学生英语语言学论文范文represented in written news stories. She argues that reporters can use a variety of techniques or ‘strategies’ to incorporate implicit meaning into their texts. In this essay, I would like to take this framework and apply it to an article from a popular news magazine. My aim is to highlight the ways in which it is possible for reporters to manipulate the information contained in speech representations. My analysis will focus on these possibilities in order to determine to what extent one should adopt a critical attitude to speech representation in written news media.

In her paper Caldas-Coulthard’s aim is to examine speech representation in relation to the following points:

a) the means and the implications of inserting one text into another;
b) the question of veracity and truthfulness;
c) the exclusion of women as speakers from the press (P. 296)

In the first section of this essay, I will follow her lead and examine how the reporter incorporates speech representation into the article. In the second section, rather than investigate the truthfulness of the article, I will analyse its accuracy in relation to the concept of authorial averral. In the final section, I will focus on the writer’s relation to sources of the quotes he uses, looking first at how they are obtained and then briefly at the people he chose to quote.

The article I have chosen can be said to be representative of most news features in the way it uses a combination of direct and indirect quotes from a variety of people. It reports on how followers of Saddam Hussein identified and threatened those who gave evidence against him during his trail, focusing specifically on those men from the town of Dujail. The article originally appeared in Time magazine on October 9th 2006, and a copy of it appears in the appendix. The page references given below refer to the original article as it appeared in the magazine.

Section One: How speech is represented in ‘Saddam’s Revenge’

A reporter has two choices in the way he represents speech in a written text. He can choose to present the quote directly by naming the speaker and attributing the following quote using a speech- reporting verb, such as ‘says’. The quote is then set off by quotation marks, and this informs readers that the words contained within the quotation marks were actually spoken by the source, the original speaker. Alternatively, the reporter can represent the speech indirectly, where he still attributes the quote to a speaker using a speech-reporting verb but does not set off the content of the quote using quotation marks. This alerts the reader to the fact that the quote is being presented in the reporter’s words and is a summary or approximation of the words as they were spoken by the original source.

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