Intensifiers as stance markers : a corpus study on genre variations in Mandarin Chinese
Date of Issue2012
College of Humanities, Arts, and Social Sciences
While the study of Mandarin Chinese intensifiers has been prolific, the methodologies used have been limited to comparative and grammaticalization studies, revealing little about the discourse-pragmatic usages of individual intensifiers. Utilizing a balanced corpus composed of 15 different prototypical genres, the associative strength of 12 commonly used intensifiers in each genre was statistically determined based on their frequency distribution. The results reveal a clear preference pattern of intensifiers across a range of “written” and “spoken”-based genres. Upon the premise that the genre preferences of intensifiers stem from matching dimensions of communicative intent/discourse context between genre and intensifier, genre-analysis was conducted to unveil the core “stances” each intensifier might possibly project. In conclusion, it is argued that genre-analysis based on empirical corpus data provides a valid alternative means to uncover seemingly “covert” aspects of language use.
Chinese language and discourse
© 2012 John Benjamins Publishing. This is the author created version of a work that has been peer reviewed and accepted for publication by Chinese Language and Discourse, John Benjamins Publishing. It incorporates referee’s comments but changes resulting from the publishing process, such as copyediting, structural formatting, may not be reflected in this document. The published version is available at: [Article DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1075/cld.3.2.01lim].