SAGE Books - The Resources of Discourse Analysis
workplace, with a special interest in the teaching of writing in college. Although structure and function of language in general, the relationships between the two fields discourse analysis research in the field of composition studies. I argue tional settings (Drew and Heritage), or how socio-cultural worldviews affect the. Keywords: discourse analysis; genre analysis; languages for specific purposes . discuss the aspects of language usually studied, the relationship between genre and . recognise and expect and the process of reading involves drawing on. drawing examples of the author's own teaching experience, the author concludes that discourse part in reading and writing lessons alike in ELT. Discourse analysis of language, spoken and written alike, proved to be very helpful s , that that discourse analysis, which “is concerned with the study of the relationship.
Conversely, "it is the fixity of the order of discourse that limits the generative power of language by precluding certain connections".
Therefore, new articulations of genres, discourses and styles of different orders of discourse also contribute to the construction of meaning. As a critical science, CDA is concerned with the ideological effects in other words, at the service of domination that meanings of texts may convey upon social relations, actions and interactions, knowledge, beliefs, attitudes, values, identities.
Studies by Thompson have served as a starting point for a transdisciplinary dialogue concerning the manners of discourse act ideologically upon social life. Unlike neutral conceptions, which characterize ideological phenomena without considering them necessarily deceitful or illusionary, or associated with interests of a particular group, Thompson conceives ideology as by nature hegemonic and thus inherently negative.
Ideological meanings necessarily strive for consensus, dissemination of particular interests as if they are universal interests, in order to establish and sustain relations of domination.
The author lists a few operational forms of ideology and respective discoursal strategies 5: It is the typical strategy of symbolic construction meant for legitimizing relations of domination are rationalization, universalization and narrativization; Dissimulation: This strategy is typical of symbolic construction associated with displacement, euphemizing and trope. Two main strategies are related to this form: These are fragmenting strategies: There are four strategies associated with this form: In native language teaching-learning practices governed by a more critical understanding, language is conceived as social practice, i.
Native language teaching and Critical Discourse Analysis
This posture converges with an understanding of literacy as a network of socially constructed practices involving reading and writing, marked by broader social processes, and responsible for reinforcing or questioning values, traditions, relations of power present in social context Street, ; ROGERS, For Faircloughp.
The project of critical language awareness is, as summarizes Lealp. As Faircloughp. Ideology meaning in the service of power is "most effective when its workings are least visible. If one becomes aware that a particular aspect of common sense is sustaining power relations at one's own expense, it ceases to be common sense, and may cease to have the capacity to sustain power inequalities, i.
This implies that, if we uncritically reproduce the common sense, the status quo that benefits a minority of the population, ideology continues to contribute to sustain power inequalities.
If, on the other hand, we reveal, de-naturalize common sense, in a consistent manner, there is a possibility of restraining, annulling, overcoming its ideological functioning.
In the Brazilian context, it is not hard to note that tradition of teaching 'Portuguese' has served, by large extent, to establish and sustain power inequalities founded on the common sense that 'language boils down to the established norm', "legitimized by powerful institutions and to which few have access" KLEIMAN,p. There has been wide discussion about the fact that social and political matters have been 'removed' from the classroom, mainly with the aim of separating "power" from "knowledge" by creating course programs and "contents" centered in allegedly "natural objects of knowledge", as if knowledge could be "natural" rather than a network of discursive practice, socio-culturally and historically situated human and social creations Foucault, .
Revisiting the ideas of Fairclough about denaturalization of the hegemonic ideology, critical language awareness can contribute to unveil and denaturalize ideological effects of inter actions, representations and identifications that are potentially guided towards projects of domination. Aligned with this idea, Geraldi , p. If it functions as a barrier undoubtedly it also works to break the barrier".
Accordingly, Coxp. In the current framework, if we wish to train and not only inform language teachers with the necessary density in order to implement, in a consequent level, the new course program, we have to make choices. And the basis of our choices would be the teacher's background seen by documents that are governing basic education.
What should be the appearance of the Linguistics course that licenses teachers to work in primary and secondary schools? We agree with the fact that, in the undergraduate Linguistics program, we are no longer able to separate "the Language subjects from the Linguistics subjects.
Nowadays, a serious course program can no longer beacon a language study that has been conducted in the fringes of knowledge produced by linguistics" Cox,p. In view of the concern and commitment in contributing to the training of critical educators, i. The following pages seek to illustrate some of the results in researching discoursal studies in the subject Language Licensure, Supervised Internship in Portuguese 1, which focuses on practice-theory reflection and classroom observation, and the subject Supervised Internship in Portuguese 2, which focuses on teaching practice.
The dynamic described here constitutes part of the preparatory activities for planning and execution, by Linguistics students, of extension courses in reading comprehension and creative writing for basic education students offered at the University of Brasilia in Intent on working through guidance and supervision, we instigated teachers in training to appeal to discoursal and socio-interactional theories studied in Internship 1 in order to plan and execute, in Internship 2, extension courses consisting of 4 in-class meetings lasting 4 hours each.
The main goal was to work with practices of language use-reflection-use, recommended by educational guidelines and conducting didactic transposition of the theories studied. The path was strewn with many successes and many failures, which, in this case, are an integral part of the development of autonomous and emancipating practice of the critical teacher in training. The experience discussed below was conducted with students of Internship 2 and was based on field work by the same students in the previous semester.
During the observation stage, which occurred in the first semester ofthe following activity program was collected. A minute Portuguese class was administered to eighth grade students in a traditional private school in Brasilia.
The material is this: It is worth highlighting that the material was collected in a school in Brasilia and was used by the teacher from that school.
The internship student collected the activity, which was then discussed in one of our reflection workshops during Internship 1 6. The teachers in training who, before the discussion started, were already aware of the richness of the lyrics and the reductionism belonging to a structuralist approach of the list of questions albeit elaborated from a textinitiated group reflections in order to indicate problems in the type of class and to suggest possible ways of tackling discursive aspects from these lyrics.
Among other problems and limitations verified in the activity, the Linguistics students indicated: The teachers in training raised, among other possibilities that tackled discoursal aspects in the classroom, didactic sequences that contemplated: Research about the types of Brazilian popular music, with focus on particular origins and characteristics of the samba subgenre "samba de partido alto"; Listening to music and exploring rhythms that contribute to build meaning in the multimodal genre i.
Research about income distribution and social inequalities in the student's community. The brief discussion carried out in this article reveals that there are countless possibilities and an enormous potential for work guided by the critical discourse perspective in teaching Portuguese as a native language; however, the adaptation and transformation process of deeply-rooted traditional practices is unsurprisingly not easy.
According to the reports submitted by teachers in training, many mishaps and obstacles must first be overcome. The effort to employ research-action practices between universities and the community is laborious, and practice has shown the need for universities to reach out to the community, rather than vice-versa, despite all types of hardships encountered to accomplish this type of project.
Report 1 describes an emblematic example of this perception pointed out by teachers in training who participated in supervised internship activities: Report 1 The opportunity of an out-of-school course favored greater self-assurance and real teaching practice, considering the situation that students face when searching for a school for work experience. The course led to intense production and reflection and the background material has excellent quality. However, students from private schools dominated the classroom.
There were very few poor students. Maybe the divulgation should have been more assertive or transportation was difficult for these students. I notice, therefore, that courses like these should prioritize the underprivileged population, which has less access to literacy practices, seeing that its exposure interferes with the acquisition of competences.
Another difficulty is that, on the one hand, teachers in training are not well received in regular schools, according to Report 1; on the other hand, teachers in training rightly point out that extension courses do not offer a "real" outlook of school life, as we illustrate with Report 2: Report 2 In relation to my learning process, the course worked as a self-knowledge tool.
I was able to reaffirm my fondness for teaching and my passion for the Portuguese language. Because it was an extension course, I understand that the students' background is not what is typically found in the common classroom. Another impasse often raised by the future teachers is the reality shock related to the fact that Portuguese language education is entirely oriented towards approval in public university entrance exams, according to Report 3: Report 3 Due to the dynamic [of the presentation], I was able to get a better idea of the class's reality, and the first thing I noticed was the fact that the students were extremely worried about the university entrance exams and their future, since many of them drew a book, or something similar, to represent the phase they were going through in life.
This point had not been raised when I prepared the classes consequently, I did not ask them what subject they wanted to major in during my first class and my focus was not to aid them in that specific point, but rather in a more general aspect of four abilities: But that was a shortcoming that I sought to remedy in the following classes.
Of course, in no way did the classes become a preparatory course for the entrance exams, but this aspect started to be a part of the class. In fact, when I said that the course was not guided towards the entrance exams, there was a certain degree of disappointment. This is a recurrent complaint in workshops and internship reports: However, we must recall that selective processes for university admittance has suffered important changes in recent years in order to meet the discoursal perspective of national education guidelines.
The recurrent difficulties of a more pedagogical nature concern the obstacles imposed by a tradition of expositive classes that "follow the textbook", as illustrates Report 4: Report 4 An aspect that I disliked was that the classes seemed kind of repetitive, with a similar structure, and even texts had very similar genres.
I don't know how I could prepare classes in a way that would correspond to the aim of the course, but the way everything happened seemed somewhat superficial and I don't know if we left the canonic scheme of school classes.
The little textbook [prepared as support material by teachers in training] helps, but, to a certain degree, it restricts, because if we do not go through everything that is propounded, it causes a bad feeling. It seemed like there was too many scheduled activities and, for this reason, it was impossible to delve deep, to properly "masticate" texts and ideas.
Even when they were able to organize their classes, prepare and employ support material as they pleased, the future teachers ended up, as they found, elaborating a "little textbook" that they followed from beginning to end of classes, and that did not offer them much diversity in terms of dynamics, reading, activities, discourse genres. Final Considerations In lieu of formerly indicating literacy projects "set of activities that originate from a real interest in student life and whose accomplishment involves the use of reading-writing", according to Kleiman,p.
According to Van Dijklanguage users ought to understand their context so they can relate to the communicative circumstances meaningfully: Discourse analysis can help students in this regard. Students at pre-intermediate and intermediate levels, as stated in Lezberg and Hilfertymay have mastered the grammar and syntax, but more often than not, they still regard language as a simple system to decode isolated words or sentences, ignoring the fact that language is used in a certain context with a specific function.
Students are usually unaware of the wide range of opportunities and options they have to use concerning certain words or phrases in different contexts. Some students struggle to analyse a message beyond clause or sentence level which prevents them from developing their communicative skills or a clearer understanding of language.
For instance, English teachers are often asked about the meaning of an isolated word without mentioning a context; this is because students may organise language in small units of meaning such as words, phrases, or chunks. Students know language structures; some students—usually the keen ones—can recite grammar rules, but when asked about the general idea of a text, they sometimes do not know how to answer.
Hence, using discourse analysis goes beyond deducting a grammar rule from a text as it can actually provide teachers opportunities to create a real-life atmosphere in class and develop other communicative skills, such as listening and speaking.
Apart from its communicative benefits, discourse analysis can also provide an opportunity to develop critical thinking. When students become critical thinkers of daily situations, they start questioning other more relevant issues in their education, which allows them to straightforwardly understand the world they live in. Students at these levels should be encouraged to go beyond simple structures, and they need to be able to state the position that the producer of the message takes according to the meaning it creates.
Several coursebooks today, especially those that deal with exam courses e. Where can you see this text? These questions appear before or after reading or listening tasks.
Usually used only as a warm up, their answers may not provide a full understanding of the function and context. Additionally, this may occur in a large class where only one student may give the right answer and the rest just support it. A more thorough analysis could be carried out in which students become aware of all the meaningful features of the message apart from the message itself. The challenge would be then, to show if students are aware of the function and the context by performing a sketch, drawing a picture, or creating a story.
By showing they can fully comprehend the message during the activities, students can be trained to repeat the process and reflect on the context and function of a message every time they face a written or spoken text, rather than just examining the structure. Several activities can be designed and some of them will be described in the following sections. Four Activities In this section, I will present four activities which can be used in relation to discourse analysis in the language classroom.
First Activity The first activity focuses on creating and performing a sketch from analysing road signs and notices, making the students reflect on the purpose of a sign. Teachers usually ask students to underline key words and think of the meaning of the message, but a detailed analysis of the text may not be done.
A deep examination of the context can be fundamental to fulfil a wider understanding of the short message: In Figure 1 there is a notice that can be found on a bus in Dublin, Ireland. A task often found in textbooks would be to show students three different explanations of the text and let learners choose the right one. Some would immediately go for the one that shares the same wording with the message. Others may get the right answer just by choosing it at random.
On the other hand, if we make students reflect on the context, they may understand the message at a deeper level. A notice found on an Irish bus http: This task can also start with a common question like: Where would you see this notice?
Students then need to analyse why the message was written and write a dialogue between two people that shows a more profound knowledge of the situation and context. It is clear that the main reason for the notice to be placed on a bus is to attract a larger number of young clients, so a dialogue which includes two company employees planning to attract more students can be performed. Teachers should encourage students to be creative and think of fun situations as long as they stick to the meaning of the message.
Teachers do not have to prepare much. They only need to download some similar notices from the web. One of the benefits is that the teacher gets students to speak in a self-controlled activity in a fun way.
Second Activity This activity involves role-playing a conversation depending on who the discursive subject and the receptor are, adapting their discourse according to the listener.
This is the scenario: How about to your father-in-law or mother-in-law? Students need to realise that a message itself contains more information than what is seen or heard at simple levels. These details help to construct a discourse which makes the meaning easier to understand. Procedure Divide the class into two groups and with the aid of a projector and a power point presentation or just some cardboard noticesthe teacher projects a message to a group of students while the other group waits outside the classroom or stands in a place where they cannot see the message.
Messages must be about uncomfortable situations or confessions like: After that, students who saw the message would choose from a basket or hat a pre-designed role card: They act out the confession of the uncomfortable question with their partner and take on the pre-designed role. The student listening should guess the relationship they have with the student speaking according to the hints they hear, not the message.
This way, students can become aware of all the meaningful details that are included in a conversation- outside the main information- in order to construct meaning. They need to pay attention not just to the actual message but also to all the details that build it. The French philosopher Michel Foucault believed that everything is discourse, every little aspect of our lives, such as the way we dress, the kind of music we listen to, etc.
Discourse gives a message to the world and we cannot escape from this reality. Taking this into account, we can get a great deal of information about a person by just observing a picture.
Procedure This activity entails analysing a piece of discourse spoken or written of a person and matching it to a picture that the teacher has prepared beforehand. These pictures should be carefully selected conforming to the details given by the discourse producer.
The following example is taken from the coursebook Global Intermediate: