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ERIC Number: ED176300
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1979-Apr
Pages: 17
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: 0
Contrastive Rhetoric: Diagnosing Problems in Coherence.
McDaniel, Barbara Albrecht
An examination of the stylistic differences among writing from literary specialists, from science, and from social science shows that a more precise diagnosis of the writing problems of clarity and coherence is possible. Ten randomly selected paragraphs from each of four publications, the "Canadian Medical Association Journal," the "Canadian Journal of Political Science,""Canadian Literature," and "Publications of the Modern Language Association," were analyzed, using Robert Kaplan's functional rhetoric of English prose as a model. In the samples that were hardest to read, authors had failed to establish topics forcefully and to pick them up and trace them through the discourse blocs with effective sentence structure. Results of the study indicated three generalizations necessary to identifying problems of coherence: English prose usually proceeds from generalizations to specifics; it is usually unsympathetic toward tangential topics; and good writers of English pick up, and treat in sequence, everything they introduce. (Examples of analyzed paragraphs are appended.) (AEA)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the Conference on College Composition and Communication (30th, Minneapolis, Minnesota, April 5-7, 1979)