Uploaded by Grace Chee


Spoken discourse is an interactive speech between two or more people, which is a broad-based
language phenomenon in daily life. Just as Cornbleet and Carter say, “speaking, in everyday conversation,
usually takes place in real time, is conducted face-to-face, is interactional” (2001: 59).
For the completion of my part of the group assignment assigned by Dr Warda , I have decided to
choose two different stories to analyse their transcription and create pattern context and find similarities and
dissimilarities .
Informal speaking discourse :The Cat in the Hat
The first sample would be by the famous Dr Seuss “The Cat in the hat” . The Cat in the Hat is a
children's book written and illustrated by Theodor Geisel under the pen name Dr. Seuss and first published in
1957. The story centers on a tall anthropomorphic cat, who wears a red and white-striped hat and a red bow
tie. The Cat shows up at the house of Sally and her brother one rainy day when their mother is away. Despite
the repeated objections of the children's fish, the Cat shows the children a few of his tricks in an attempt to
entertain them. In the process he and his companions, Thing One and Thing Two, wreck the house. The
children and the fish become more and more alarmed until the Cat produces a machine that he uses to clean
everything up and disappears just before the children's mother comes home. (wikipedia)
Within the text of the Cat in the Hat , we could observe many informal spoken discourse happening
between the Cat , The children and of course the fish . We now look at the text phrases below
The first we can notice in an informal speaking discourse consinting of sentence fragmentation.We tend to
speak in short stretches, called utterances. Utterances may be, but frequently are not, accurate or
completesentences. In fact, many utterances are comprised of incomplete, fragmented segments. Boundaries
are often unclear, also due to overlaps between participants.One example is Verbal Ellipsis
For instances :
The Cat in the Hat
And he said to us
“ Why do you sit there like that ?”
Here the Cat ask informally why the kids just sit there without doing anything .However the question seems
rather hanging and incomplete and seems to be omitting some kind of information. So this is a form of verbal
Ellipsis rather than a formal form of spoken discourse .
Another instances is :
“ I know it is wet
And the sun is not sunny
But we can have
Lots of good fun and that is funny”
The statement I know it is wet is a form of Nominal Ellipsis .As all the characters already knew it was raining ,
For grammatical
Some minor Discourse markers were used in the conversations between the Cat and the children .
For instances:
A lot of good tricks
I will show them to you .
Your mother
Will not mind at all if I do .
Hence if in this conversation is a discourse markers .
The Cat in the Hat is famous for its simple rhyme known as anapaestic tetrameter .Take a look below
Have no fear ! said the cat
I will not let you fall
I will hold you up high
As I stand on a ball
Anapestic tetrameter is a poetic meter that has four anapestic metrical feet per line. Each foot has two
unstressed syllables followed by a stressed syllable. It is sometimes referred to as a "reverse dactyl", and shares
the rapid, driving pace of the dactyl.Because The Cat in the Hat uses these sort rhyming in the book , hence it
contains many spoken prosidy that emphasizes on intonation , syllable which is good for early childhood
readers .These are also the phonological part of the book .
And finally is the usage of Lexical Cohesion , A text or discourse is not just a set of sentences, each
on some random topic. Rather, the sentences and phrases of any sensible text will each tend to be about the
same things -- that is, the text will have a quality of unity.One example is via reiteration:
I know some good tricks
Said the Cat in the hat
A lot of good tricks
The next book chosen is by Rudyard Kupling , “the Jungle Book” for the formal spoken discourse .
The first characteristic of the spoken discourse is the coherence . Coherence means the connection of ideas at
the idea level, and cohesion means the connection of ideas at the sentence level.Here we can observe how
mother Wolf explain why Shere Khan is causing trouble in their lives .
‘His mother did not call him Lungri [the Lame One] for nothing,’ said Mother Wolf quietly. ‘He has been lame in one
foot from his birth. That is why he has only killed cattle. Now the villagers of the Waingunga are angry with him, and
he has come here to make our villagers angry. They will scour the jungle for him when he is far away, and we and our
children must run when the grass is set alight. Indeed, we are very grateful to Shere Khan!’
the spoken discourse .
‘How little! How naked, and—how bold!’ said Mother Wolf softly. The baby was pushing his way between the cubs to
get close to the warm hide. ‘Ahai! He(cataphoric) is taking his meal with the others. And so this is a man’s cub. Now,
was there ever a wolf that could boast of a man’s cub among her (anaphora)children?’ ‘I(cataphoric) have heard now
and again of such a thing, but never in our(exophoric) Pack or in my time,’ said Father Wolf. ‘He is altogether without
hair, and I could kill him with a touch of my foot. But see, he looks up and is not afraid.’
There are a few good examples for lexical cohesion in the book as well ,There is the usage of Hyponymy,for instances
The baby is also called a man-cub .There are also some examples of Collocation such as to get close /looks up .
He is altogether without hair, and I could kill him with a touch of my foot. But see, he looks up and is not afraid.’
This simple sentences has ,nouns, pronouns,verbs ,determiners ,adverbs ,prepositions making a complete sentences .This
demonstrate a complete syntactical sentence.
In the text below we could observe Verbal substitution in the speech
‘Keep him!’ she gasped. ‘He came naked, by night, and very hungry; yet he was not afraid!(Verbal substitution) Look,
he has pushed one of my babes to one side already. And that lame butcher would have killed him and would have run
off to the Waingunga while the villagers here hunted through all our lairs in revenge!(Causal conjunction) Keep
him? Assuredly I will keep him. Lie still, little frog. O thou Mowgli —for Mowgli the Frog I will call thee—the time will
come when thou wilt hunt Shere Khan as he has hunted thee.’ (causal conjunctions)
As the Jungle Book is rather an old story , we could see the style of the book is rather classical and used a lot of Old
English . Phonological patterns is highly stressed . For example the word “thou” pronounced as “thaw” and “thee” as
“dhee” .The name Mowgli is pronounced as “Mog- Li” All these words are to used the British accent and the sounds
made are classified under their articulations .
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