By Shi Xu

Shi-xu evaluations universalism in discourse reviews by way of the cultural results of its present white, western perspective and advocates a culturally pluralist procedure, a concept and examine method from an leading edge place among jap and Western cultures. sensible study innovations are illustrated through examples drawn from culturally large ranging discourses.

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Extra resources for A Cultural Approach to Discourse

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Consequently, valued ‘progress’, ‘development’ and ‘transformation’ of historical discourse are ‘positive’ only from culture-specific and contemporary perspectives. Discourse and Reality 33 In Foucault’s later works (1986, 1987), more attention is paid to and greater emphasis put on ethics and hence human, subjective agency as an account for change. For Foucault, ethics and agency are the possible subject positions that speakers can take and to exercise these is to take or create such subject positions.

Often, even what is said is of no importance, but the fact that something is said, in particular ways, may serve to establish or maintain a certain social bond. Think of greetings or exchange of pleasantries. As part of the process of speaking of and acting upon the world, speakers and listeners, writers and readers, may interrelate and interconnect each other and still others; they may be creating, maintaining or transforming relationships of various kinds. Consequently, participants in any discourse situation become intermingled: ‘they’ may turn out to be part of ‘us’, and ‘we’ part of ‘them’.

Meaning and context Discourse, as an object of enquiry, poses a central problem of meaning, and hence of interpretation, for the researcher. Discourse is essentially a meaning-making activity (recall the definition of discourse above). There is a sense, consequently, in which to study discourse is to study its meanings. So, in this section, I shall discuss some of the characteristics of meaning. And yet, the meaning of discourse cannot be understood without investigation into the context in which a text in question is embedded.

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