ERIC Number: ED243128
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1984-Mar
Reference Count: 0
Hierarchies of Audiences and Texts.
Herndl, Carl G.
Interviews with executives, managers, and entry-level engineers and analysts in 15 large corporations from both technical and nontechnical fields yielded sociolinguistic information about some of the writing problems young professionals have. The first of the problems is the familiar case in which the writer uses overly elaborate syntax and inappropriately specialized or inflated diction. Another problem is the writer's inability to determine the appropriate level of detail and specificity for a document. In a number of cases the writers provide too many or overly esoteric details. Another corporate writing concern is producing the right kind of discourse structure for certain writing tasks. Specifically, in texts where writers should be making conclusions and recommendations, they characteristically use narrative rather than analytic structures. To an extent, the choice of text structure is a matter of training, but it is also a phatic act, which seeks to establish membership in a privileged group. This suggests that the writing problem depends on the personality of the writer as it is shaped by his or her community, in this case the scientific community. (HOD)
Publication Type: Reports - Descriptive; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Audience Awareness
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the Conference on College Composition and Communication (35th, New York City, NY, March 29-31, 1984).