NotesFAQContact Us
Search Tips
Peer reviewed Peer reviewed
Direct linkDirect link
ERIC Number: EJ779599
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2003
Pages: 27
Abstractor: Author
ISSN: ISSN-0741-0883
Dissertation Acknowledgments: The Anatomy of a Cinderella Genre
Hyland, Ken
Written Communication, v20 n3 p242-268 2003
Although sometimes considered to be only marginally related to the key academic goals of establishing claims and reputations, acknowledgments are commonplace in scholarly communication and virtually obligatory in dissertation writing. The significance of this disregarded "Cinderella" genre lies partly in the opportunities it offers students to present a social and scholarly self disentangled from academic discourse conventions and personally thank those who have shaped the accompanying text. Beyond the role it plays in academic gift giving and self-presentation, however, the textualization of gratitude reveals social and cultural characteristics, an intimation of disciplinary specialization within a broad generic structure. This analysis of the acknowledgments accompanying 240 Ph.D. and M.A. dissertations written by nonnative speakers of English suggests that personal gratitude is mediated by disciplinary preferences and strategic career choices, reflecting one way in which postgraduate writing represents a situated activity.
SAGE Publications. 2455 Teller Road, Thousand Oaks, CA 91320. Tel: 800-818-7243; Tel: 805-499-9774; Fax: 800-583-2665; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A