ERIC Number: EJ779579
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2002
Reference Count: 0
From the Dynamic to the Synoptic Articles in the Physical Review: Beginnings and 1980
Vande Kopple, William J.
Written Communication, v19 n2 p227-264 2002
This article presents evidence that, from selected spectroscopic articles in the earliest volumes of the Physical Review to other selected spectroscopic articles from the same journal in 1980, a shift in sentence style takes place. This shift is from what M.A.K. Halliday calls the dynamic style (which reflects happenings, processes, and actions) to the synoptic style (which reflects things, structures, and categories). The article proposes that the early writers used the dynamic style primarily to set information in a distinct time and thus to avoid giving the impression that the information should be regarded as widely generalizable. It also proposes that the later writers used the synoptic style because it allowed them to represent processes as things, to delineate many fine shades of meaning, and to extend their arguments economically. The article concludes by suggesting areas of future research for students of scientific style and for composition scholars.
Descriptors: Technical Writing, Journal Articles, Periodicals, Sentence Structure, Language Styles, Writing (Composition), Writing Research
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Publication Type: Information Analyses; Journal Articles
Education Level: N/A
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