Language being one of the most evident and powerful ‘markers’ of cultural identity, discourse and text are sites where cultures are both constructed and displayed and where identities are negotiated. The approaches to the analysis of culture and identity adopted here to account for the multifaceted realisations of cultural identities in the texts and documents taken into consideration span from multimodality, to discourse and genre analysis, to corpus linguistics and text analysis. The volume then offers a varied picture of approaches to the scientific enquiry into the multifaceted manifestations of identity in and across national, professional, and disciplinary cultures.
Cross-disciplinary Identity-forming Strategies in Research Articles: Michele Sala
Cross-disciplinary Identity-forming Strategies in Research Articles1
The present paper investigates the issue of identity by analysing generic variation in intercultural and cross-disciplinary academic communication. Several studies, especially over the last two decades, have dealt with identity-shaping differences in linguistic and socio-cultural terms, taking into consideration the native language of the writers, their gender, their professional standing and acquired authoritativeness in a given field (Swales 1990, Duszak 1997, Hyland / Bondi 2006) within the context of an expanding internationalization of scholarly discourse in English (Ventola / Mauranen 1996, Hyland 2000, Candlin 2002). Such studies have provided an articulated account of the identity-forming strategies and factors involved. The purpose of the present analysis is to assess the construction of identity from a different perspective, that is by investigating whether scholars in different domains make use of different strategies in rhetorically constructing their textual persona, when addressing their professional reference group to discuss a specific object of knowledge. The main aim is to investigate whether and how cultural and professional values and specific epistemological systems of reference, on the one hand, and generic constraints, on the other, influence the construing of disciplinary identity traits. In other words, this study aims to evaluate how differently experts in different disciplinary domains interpret generic standards for the purpose of effectiveness. The assumption is that phenomena of ← 87 | 88 → cross-disciplinary generic variation (Bazerman 1988, Myers 1990, Berkenkotter / Hukin 1995) and, for the same reason, the concept...