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英语经济合同文本的显性与隐性衔接:语篇功能视角

时间:2018-02-03 20:39来源:硕士论文作者:lgg 点击:
本文是英语语言学论文,本文基于韩礼德和哈桑的衔接理论,结合功能文体学理论,以本地会计师事务所的雇佣合同、银行贷款合同、外贸进出口合同等英语经济合同为语料。
Chapter One Introduction
 
1.1 Background of the Study
With the trend of global economic integration and our country’s further openingto the world, the policy of the Belt and Road Initiative and China Free Trade Zone hasbeen proposed in China. The economic ties among countries in the world becomecloser. International trade exchanges in most cases are always under the control of lawsystem because China is a highly legalized country. As a tool of communication, thetranslation of economic contracts has a significant influence on business transactions.But at this present moment, there are some problems on translation of economiccontract texts. A well-translated version can promote international economictransactions. Meanwhile, for reaching the goal, it is essential to understand contracttexts and take those factors mentioned above into consideration. This thesis tries toanalyze those particular cohesive devices and their functions of English economiccontract texts from the textual function.Halliday is considered as the founder of systemic functional grammar. Heproposed that textual function provides the analysis method for how the languageworks from the perspective of three meta-functions. Since Halliday and Hasan had putinitially forward the cohesive theory in 1976, numerous scholars are paying moreattention to this theory. Gradually, the theory of cohesion is applied to study literaryand non-literary texts by many scholars. However, few articles are dealing with legaltexts through explicit and implicit cohesion. This thesis intends to have a furtherunderstanding of law language, especially cohesive devices in economic contracttexts.
.......
 
1.2 Research Questions and Methods
Legal English, as an independent and special register, is a language variety withits own linguistic characteristics. Therefore, economic contract texts are differentfrom other kinds of texts in several aspects. This thesis deals with explicit cohesionand implicit cohesion of English economic contract texts and presents a statisticalanalysis of the occurrence frequencies of different kinds of cohesive devices.It mainly adopts the research methods of qualitative and quantitative analysis.The selected texts of various cohesive devices are helpful for quantitative analysis,which is also called stylistic statistics, and it will further contribute to qualitativeanalysis through describing two kinds of cohesive ties.With these methods, the thesis attempts to solve the following questions:(1) What are the general stylistic features of English economic contract texts?(2) How about their textual function that is achieved by their cohesive devices?
.........
 
Chapter Two Literature Review
 
This part is to make a brief literature review of previous studies on legal Englishat home or abroad, which consists of two sections: studies on legal language andstudies on legal texts from functional-linguistics perspective.
 
2.1 Previous Studies on Legal Language
In the late 1970’s, Britain and the United States gradually began to set foot on thenew pragmatic field ─ legal language, represented by Atkinson & Drew (1979), O’Barr (1982), Stygall (1994) and so on. Liao (2004) declares that the 1970s is thewatershed of the legal language study. Since the 1970s, the study of law languagefocuses primarily on the wording, grammar structure, punctuation and characteristicsof legal texts. From a perspective on criminal investigation Shuy (1988) presents twoissues: employing discourse analysis to analyze criminal cases and using the criminalcases to present some linguistic problems.The difference in legal language is the most noticed one in terms of vocabulary.Mellinkoff (1963) in his masterpiece "The Language of the Law" firstly illustrates theBritish and American legal language systematically and thoroughly. He finds someparticular stylistic features of British and American legal language, such as cants, highfrequency use of Latin, specialized terms, formal vocabulary and so on. And these areall confined into the lexical level in a single clause. Later, combining lexical andsyntactic elements into discourse, Chaim (1983) studies the patterns of lawyers’language and proposes a model which accommodates a sample of legal language fromany type of legal document and can be applied to lexical and syntactic elements aswell as the whole documents. Although finally he gives an example to illustrate legallanguage, he does not present what makes a legal document combined perfectly.
...........
 
2.2 Previous Studies on Legal Texts from Functional Linguistics
Halliday’s Systemic Functional Linguistics has been tried out by many linguiststo analyze all kinds of texts, because Halliday once directly presents that the purposeof his functional linguistics is to analyze texts. The application of functionallinguistics in the analysis of legal language also becomes more popular.A lot of studies combine the functional linguistics with the translation of legaltexts or economic contracts. Yang (2005) and Yang (2012) emphasize the consistencyof the source language and the target language. From the systemic functionalgrammar perspective, Zhang (2007) probes business contracts by making full use ofthree meta-functions to find out how the realization of ideational (transitivity, voice),interpersonal (mood, modality) and textual (theme system, cohesion and coherence)function is achieved. He proves the applicability of SFG in business contracts, andunder the guidance of SFG, it is extremely helpful and efficient to help readersunderstand business texts.There are few scholars who study the legal language in terms of coherence andcohesion, Peng & Li (2004) studies the cohesive devices in foreign contracts with thehelp of Halliday’s discourse cohesion theory and they especially focus on the cohesivefunction of archaism. Focus on the text itself, Deng (2007) presents that there areinternal cohesive devices like references, conjunction, substitution, lexical cohesion,and gives some vivid examples to support his point.In terms of grammatical and lexical level, Huang (2008) summarizes bothgrammatical and lexical cohesion in legal texts and classifies their features in legaltexts. He also concludes that cohesion widely exists in this kind of variety and thereare some differences in the use of cohesive devices in Chinese and English legal texts.However, he still insists there should be other cohesive devices that he does not touchupon. One aspect of this Sun (2012) compares lexical cohesion (repetition, synonymy,collocation) in English and Chinese legal texts and their mutual translation based onthe cohesion theory of Halliday and Hasan. But lexical cohesion is never a big icon ofcohesive devices so that there are more left to enrich the present research.
.........
 
Chapter Three Theoretical Foundation.....9
3.1 Discourse Markers............9
3.2 Stylistic Analysis ............ 10
3.3 Halliday & Hasan’s Theory of Cohesion.......... 11
3.3.1 Cohesion ....... 11
3.3.2 Coherence ...... 12
Chapter Four Legal English:ASpecial Variety of Language ............14
4.1 Field of Discourse........... 14
4.2 Tenor of Discourse.......... 15
4.3 Mode of Discourse.......... 17
4.4 General Features of Economic Contract.......... 17
Chapter Five Cohesive Device: Explicit Cohesion....22
5.1 A General Picture of Two Sample Texts’ Explicit Cohesion ............ 22
5.2 Reference Markers ......... 23
5.3 Substitution Markers ...... 29
5.4 Conjunction Markers...... 32
5.5 Collocation Markers ....... 34
 
Chapter Six Cohesive Device: Implicit Cohesion
 
This chapter will carry out some analysis of another cohesive devices existed inthe English economic contract texts — implicit cohesion. Compared with explicitcohesion, the implicit cohesion is not obvious. As a result, the implicit cohesive formsa invisible net between words and expressions at the semantic level.
 
6.1 Implicit Cohesion:ADefinition
Just as Zhang Delu (2003) says, it is incomplete for a text only to treat its intratextual cohesion as the condition of coherence, because we have not taken the textualmeaning generalized from non-linguistic context. No discourse is completely free ofits non-linguistic contexts, because part of its meaning will be implicit, supplied bythe background knowledge of the participants, or the concrete context they areinvolved in. In most cases, there are lots of texts without overtly formal markers orexplicit cohesive links in the surface structure, but they are still well understood as aunified and coherent whole. Implicit cohesion can give a reasonable explanation tosuch phenomena. In the works The Development of the Theory of Text Coherence andCohesion and Its Applications (Zhang Delu & Liu Rushan, 2003), when lack offormal marks serving as inferring clues for the receiver to understand the text as acoherent whole, the cohesive relation between the text and context will be built up bythe aid of implicit cohesive devices, which are implicit and hidden in the deepstructure. That is to say, the establishment of implicit cohesion is to dig out theimplying meaning or semantic relations hidden in context of situation and context ofculture. Non-linguistic context such as situational context, socio-cultural context, andknowledge of the world can provide contextual information or clues for the inferenceof implicature.
........
 
Conclusion
 
The present study from the perspective of textual function and on the basis ofHalliday and Hasan’s theory of cohesion, has undertaken to analyzing some generalfeatures and cohesive devices in selected samples of English economic contract texts.The thesis has analyzed some general features of English economic contract textsat the lexical level, the syntactic level and the textual level. And the cohesive devicesfalls into two kinds: explicit cohesion and implicit cohesion.First of all, legal English is used as a special variety of language for particularlypurpose, and the specific contextual variables determine its formal style of writing. Inthe light of stylistic analysis of some samples of economic contract texts, we find thatat the lexical level, archaic words such as "whereas", "herein", "thereto", terminologyand modal verbs such as "shall" and "may" are widely used; at syntactic level, mainlyconditional sentence and declarative sentence, conditional clauses guided by "if", "inthe event that", "should" and so on, are often used in English economic contracts inorder to keep the text accurate and precise; at the textual level, legal discourse has thecharacteristics of formal and rigorous features.Secondly, for two cohesive devices, this thesis finds that explicit cohesivemarkers tend to be more widely used than implicit cohesive one. To be specific, inexplicit cohesion, reference markers are used most frequently to show the unity oflegal language. Next are conjunction markers and collocation markers, which makethe whole texts more coherent. Explicit cohesion markers have their own features ofclarity in form and logic, they can make the English economic contract texts logical instructure and clearer in semantic relations. On the other hand, in implicit cohesion,parallel pattern and simple linear pattern are used more frequently. However, derivedpattern is little used, which emphasizes the rigorous structure of economic contracttexts. The implicit cohesion in the text of English economic contracts with its specificvalue and influence determines the difficulty of textual decoding. The readers need toexplore the implied coherent information that is hidden in economic contract texts,therefore reaching the goal of a coherent whole. Both explicit and implicit cohesionshave their particular features and can produce the best effects.Last but not least, this thesis tries to help readers to have a furthercomprehension of general linguistic features and cohesive ties of contracts, and tothose people who are teaching or learning legal knowledge. Moreover, it contributesto having a well-translated version of English economic contract texts.
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References (abbreviated)
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