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ENGA3 Discourses Question June 2012 Exemplar Response

Beth Kemp | Sunday May 13, 2012

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  1. Introduction to ENGA3 Revision Guide
  2. ENGA3 Answering the Language Change Question
  3. ENGA3 Language Change Question June 2012
  4. ENGA3 Language Change Question June 2012 Exemplar Response
  5. ENGA3 Answering the Language Variation Question
  6. ENGA3 Language Variation Question June 2012
  7. ENGA3 Language Variation Question June 2012 Exemplar Response
  8. ENGA3 Answering the Discourses Question
  9. ENGA3 Discourses Question June 2012
  10. ENGA3 Discourses Question June 2012 Exemplar Response
  11. ENGA3 Exam Practice Feedback

Both of these texts are produced by the proudly prescriptivist ‘Queen’s English Society’ and are intended to persuade an audience of their opinions about language.

They are written in a way that is presumably supposed to sound chatty and yet has a trace of pomposity about it. The writer attempts to engage the audience, for example with the rhetorical question “Now where does the QES stand on the issue?” to open the fourth paragraph of Text E. However, this simple sentence has the tone of something that a lecturer might say to help structure a long piece of explanation. It acts as a discourse marker but would fail to engage many people, as it feels patronising. Lexical choices such as the abstract nouns “liberty” and “omission” in Text E, the verb “bemoans” and the collective noun “the populace” in Text F are all quite old fashioned, revealing the QES’s conservatism and its ‘out of touch’ nature.

Both texts make use of many bold declarative sentences in the present tense, intended to convince the reader that the picture they paint is an accurate statement of the way things are. Modals are avoided in these sentences, and the QES instead opts for the straightforward primary verb ‘to be’, allowing no doubt in the reader’s mind. This can be seen in sentences such as “So fundamentally, for the Descriptivists, any liberty that is frequently and widely enough taken with the language is acceptable.” in Text E and “This is not a vain...


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