Rhetorical Moves in an Occluded Genre: A Qualitative Analysis of Suicide Notes

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Creator: 

Abaalkhail, Atekah

Date: 

2015

Abstract: 

The purpose of this study is to investigate suicide notes from the perspective of English for Specific Purposes (ESP) (Bhatia, 1993, 2004; Swales, 1990) genre approach. Specifically, the study examines the communicative purpose(s) and the rhetorical move/step structure (Swales, 1990) in a corpus of suicide notes. Eighty-six suicide notes (Leenaars, 1988; Shneidman & Farberow, 1957) were analyzed using the rhetorical move/step analysis (Swales, 1990). The findings suggest that suicide notes share common communicative purposes and rhetorical move/step structure, and, therefore, constitute a genre from the ESP perspective. By establishing the rhetorical move structure of suicide notes, this study addresses the lack of genre-based studies of suicide notes in the literature and makes a theoretically-based contribution to the fields of genre studies and, potentially, forensic linguistics. Keywords: Suicide notes, ESP, genre, rhetorical move/step analysis

Subject: 

Linguistics
Language

Language: 

English

Publisher: 

Carleton University

Thesis Degree Name: 

Master of Arts: 
M.A.

Thesis Degree Level: 

Master's

Thesis Degree Discipline: 

Applied Linguistics and Discourse Studies

Parent Collection: 

Theses and Dissertations

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