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Narratives in Academic and Professional Genres


Edited By Maurizio Gotti and Carmen Sancho Guinda

This book received the Enrique Alcaraz Research Award in 2015.

Through Narrative Theory, the book offers an engaging panorama of the construction of specialised discourses and practices within academia and diverse professional communities. Its chapters investigate genres from various fields, such as aircraft accident reports, clinical cases and other scientific observations, academic conferences, academic blogs, climate-change reports, university decision-making in public meetings, patients’ oral and written accounts of illness, corporate annual reports, journalistic obituaries, university websites, narratives of facts in legal cases, narrative processes in arbitration hearings, briefs, and witness examination accounts. In addition to exploring narration in this wide range of contexts, the volume uses narrative as a powerful tool to gain a methodological insight into professional and academic accounts, and thus it contributes to research into theoretical issues. Under the lens of Narratology, Discourse and Genre Analysis, fresh research windows are opened on the study of academic and professional interactions.


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BEGOÑA BELLÉS FORTUÑO Marginal Stories in Classroom Asides - 67


BEGOÑA BELLÉS FORTUÑO Marginal Stories in Classroom Asides 1. Introduction There are seminal studies on the use of narratives in academia (Gri- mes 1975, Dubois 1980, Myers 1990, 1994, Weissberg 1993, Thomp- son 2002, Juzwick 2006) which can illustrate the way narratives are used in its genres. Before the widespread use of the word ‘narrative’, the concept of narratology was defined as the theory of accounts: texts, events, images, spectacles or any cultural occurrence where a story is told (Bal 1997). Grabe (2002: 252) points out the idea of causal sequences as the emergence of most narratives in order to gain a coherent interpretation: The family of narrative discourse structures represent text types that are typically episodic in nature and include a set of identifying criteria that bear family resemblances to one another. All narratives involve characterization and protagonist’s perspective, they involve sequence of events, some events being out of the ordinary and requiring explanation, typically presented as a causal changing of events. […] Types of narratives include, among others, recounts, fore counts, historical events, (auto)biographies, tales, and fictions. […] Most narratives are centrally driven by an assumption of causal se- quences chaining together to provide coherent interpretation. There are also a number of purposes and formal linguistic features associated with most com- mon narratives […]. Research on narrative discourse has promoted the creation of models of and approaches to narratives in different disciplines and genres. One of these approaches is Labov’s (1981) model of narrative analy- sis. It...

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