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Identities in and across Cultures


Paola Evangelisti Allori

This volume is a collection of empirical studies investigating the ways and means through which culturally-shaped identities are manifested in and through discourse in documents and texts from multiple spheres of social action. It also looks at possible ways in which understanding and acceptance of diverse cultural identities can be moulded and developed through appropriate education.
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.
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The Multiple Identities of the Business Academic: Belinda Crawford Camiciottoli



The Multiple Identities of the Business Academic

1. Introduction

It is now widely recognized that identity is a largely social phenomenon and is therefore closely linked to language (Meinhof 2001). According to De Fina (2003: 15) identity is “an extremely complex construct”, also because interlocutors often draw upon multiple identities in a given communicative context. In addition, identities are not static entities, but tend to be dynamically negotiated as discourse unfolds. In recent years, the concept of identity has become increasingly important in the study of discourse as it provides insights into how language is used to negotiate representations of self. This is especially true when discourse is investigated from a social constructivist perspective which emphasizes the social and cultural context in which the language is produced and received.

Studies in the area of academic discourse have shown how linguistic resources can be used to construct identities in different ways. In academic writing, producers of texts manipulate language to represent themselves as legitimate members of a discourse community (Ivanič 1998; Fløttum et al. 2006). Some of the specific devices used to achieve this aim include forms of citation (Hyland 1999) and hedging (Myers 1989) in research articles, personal pronouns in student writing (Tang / John 1999) and scholarly e-discussion lists Sokól (2005) and metadiscourse in textbooks (Hyland 2000). In academic speech, we find a perhaps more complex representation of identity likely due to the face-to-face nature of...

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