PHONETIC AND GRAPHIC EXPRESSIVE

Lecture 5.

PHONETIC AND GRAPHIC EXPRESSIVE

MEANS AND STYLISTIC DEVICES

1. Instrumentation means: alliteration, assonance, onomatopoeia, tone.

2. Versification means: rhyme, rhythm.

3. Graphic means: punctuation, orthography, type, text segmentation.

Stylistically marked phonemes do not exist. Consequently, there are no expressive means on the phonological language level. Nevertheless, specific combinations of sounds may create different speech effects and devices. While studying phonetic stylistic devices we deal with the way words sound in combination. Phonetic SD are used to produce a certain acoustic effect and add emphasis to the utterance, arousing certain emotions on the part of the reader or the listener.

Euphony (Greek eu = “well”, phone = “sound”) is a combination of sounds capable of producing a pleasing acoustic effect. Euphony is generally achieved by phonetic stylistic devices which belong to versification and instrumentation types.

1. Instrumentation means: alliteration, assonance, onomatopoeia, tone.

Instrumentation is the art of selecting and combining sounds in order to make utterances expressive and melodic. Instrumentation unites three basic stylistic devices: alliteration, assonance and onomatopoeia.

Alliteration (Latin al - “to”, litters - “letters”)is a stylistically motivated repetition of the same consonant sound at the beginning of successive words or accented syllables. Alliteration is often used in children's rhymes, because it emphasizes rhythm and makes memorizing easier:

She sells sea shells on the sea shore.

Peter Piper picked a peck of pickled pepper.

Alliteration is deeply rooted in the traditions of English folklore:

There are twelve months in all the year,

As I hear many men say.

But the merriest month in all the year

Is the merry month of May. (Popular Ballad).

The same effect is employed in advertising, so that slogans will stick in people's minds: Snap, crackle and pop. Alliteration is used much more in poetry than in prose. It is also used in proverbs and sayings (тише едешь, дальше будешь; один ссошкой, семеро с ложкой), set expressions, football chants, and advertising jingles.

Assonance (Latin assonare - “to respond”)is a stylistically motivated repetition of stressed vowels. The repeated sounds stand close together to create a euphonious effect and rhyme:

Ring out, wild bells, to the wide sky,

The flying cloud, the frosty light,

The year is dying in the night.

Ring out, wild bells, and let him die. (A. Tennyson. “In Memoriam”).

Just like alliteration, assonance makes texts easy to memorize: The rain in Spain falls mainly on the plain. We love to spoon beneath the moon in June.

It is also popular in advertising for the same reason. Assonance is seldom met as an independent stylistic device. It is usually combined with alliteration, rhyming, and other devices:

Брожу, ли я вдоль улиц шумных,

Вхожу ль во многолюдный храм,

Сижу ль меж юношей безумных,

Я предаюсь своим мечтам. (А. С. Пушкин)

Onomatopoeia is a combination of sounds which imitate natural sounds: wind wailing, sea murmuring, rustling of leaves, bursts of thunder, etc. Words which represent this figure of speech have aural similarity with the things they describe: buzz = жужжать, roar = грохотать, bang = бахнуть, hiss = шипеть, sizzle = шипеть на сковородке, twitter = чирикать, pop = хлопать, swish = рассекать воздух, burble = бормотать, cuckoo = куковать, splash - плескаться. Animal calls and sounds of insects are evoked onomatopoeically in all languages. For example, cock-a-doodle-do! is conventionally the English representation for the crowing of a cock. Interestingly, the Russians and the French represent this imitation as кукареку and cocorico correspondingly, which is significantly different from the English variant, although logic tells us that the roster's cry is the same across the world. It means that onomatopoeia is not an exact reproduction of natural sounds but a subjective phenomenon.



Onomatopoeia is used for emphasis or stylistic effect. It is extensively featured in children's rhymes and poetry in general.

Expressiveness of speech may be also significantly enhanced by such phonetic means as tone. To the linguist "tone" means the quality of sound produced by the voice in uttering words. In a general sense, tone is the attitude of the speaker or writer as revealed in the choice of vocabulary or the intonation of speech. Written or spoken communication might be described as having a tone which is, for instance, ironic, serious, flippant (1. легкомысленный, несерьезный; бездумный; беспечный; небрежный; 2. непочтительный, невежливый; дерзкий), threatening, light-hearted, or pessimistic. Attitude expressed in tone may be rendered consciously or unconsciously. It could be said that there is no such thing as a text or verbal utterance without a tone. In most cases, tone is either taken for granted, or perceived unconsciously.

2. Versification means: rhyme, rhythm.

Versification is the art of writing verses. It is the imaginative expression of emotion, thought, or narrative, mostly in metrical form and often using figurative language. Poetry has traditionally been distinguished from prose (ordinary written language) by rhyme or the rhythmical arrangement of words (metre). So the main concepts of versification are rhythm and rhyme.

Rhythm (Greek rhythmos) is a regular alternation of similar or equal units of speech. When applied to prose it means the measured flow of words and phrases. Rhythmical prose is based on deliberately arranged syntactical groups as well as on elements of repetition and syntactical parallelisms. The unit of measure in prose may be a word, a word combination, a phrase, a clause, a sentence, even a syntactical whole which will be repeated within the given passage of the text.

It was the best of times, it was the worst of times; it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness. (Ch. Dickens. A Tale of Two Cities).

Sometimes due to rhythm, the borderline between prose and poetry is becoming almost imperceptible.

When applied to poetry rhythm means the regular alternation of stressed and unstressed syllables which is called metre (размер) (Greek metron - “measure”). The unit of measure of metre is poetic feet in which lines in verses are built.

A foot(стопа) is a combination of one stressed and one or two unstressed syllables. There are five basic feet in English poetry: two disyllabic - iambus and trochee; three trisyllabic (трехсложный) - dactyl, amphibrach and anapest.

Iambus is a foot consisting of two syllables with the second one accented (stressed):

I never saw a man who looked

With such a wistful eye (O. Wilde)

Trochee is a foot of two syllables with the first one accented:

Humid seal of soft affections,

Tend’rest pledge of future bliss,

Dearest tie of young connections,

Love’s first snow - drop virgin kiss (R. Burns. To a Kiss).

Dactyl is a foot of three syllables with the first one accented:

Hail to the Chief who in triumph advances,

Honoured and blessed be the ever-green pine! (Walter Scott)

Amphibrach is a foot of three syllables with the middles one accented:

The warm sun is failing, the bleak wind is wailing;

the bare boughs are sighing, the pale flowers dying (Shelley)

Anapest is a foot of three syllables with the third one accented:

When the web that we weave is complete,

And the shuttle exchanged for the sword… (Byron)

Rhyme is the accord of syllables in words: fact - attract, mood - intrude; news - refuse. Such an accord is met at the end of two parallel lines in verses. Rhyme is a sound organizer, uniting lines into stanzas.

Rhyme is created according to several patterns. Vertically, there are such rhymes: adjacent (aa, bb), cross (ab, ab) and reverse (ab, ba). According to the variants of stress in the words being rhymed, rhymes are classified into male (the last syllables of the rhymed words are stressed), female (the next syllables to the last are stressed) and dactylic (the third syllables from the end are stressed).

Poetry is actually the earliest form of literature, and was created precisely to be spoken – in the days before many could read. Here are some miscellaneous (смешанный; разнообразный) remarks about poetry made by writers and critics at various time. These remarks make an answer to the question "What is poetry?"

1. A poem has to be in lines.

2. A poem has to have rhymes.

3. A poem has to be in one of a number of set rhythms.

4.A poem has to have verses/stanzas (станс, строфа).

5. The rhythms of poetry are quite different from ordinary speech.

6. A poem has to have a capital letter at the start of each line.

7. A poem has to have vivid, descriptive words.

8. A poem has to have imagery – similes, metaphors and other stylistic devices.

9. The language used in poetry is a special kind of language.

10. Some words are not suitable in poetry.

11. Some subjects are not suitable for poetry.

12. Some subjects are more poetic than others.

3. Graphic means: punctuation, orthography, type, text segmentation.

Graphic expressive means serve to convey in the written form the emotions which in oral speech are expressed by intonation and stress. Basic notions of graphic expressive meansare punctuation, orthogra­phy or spelling, text segmentation, and type. There is no correlation between the type of graphical means and the type of intonation they reflect. Graphic expressive means are subdivided into two main types:

1) the expressive use of punctuation;

2) the deliberate change of the spelling of the word

I. Punctuation is used in writing to show the stress, rhythm and tone of the spoken word. It also aims at clarifying the meaning of sentences. There are such common marks of punctuation: the full stop [ . ], the comma [ , ], the colon [ : ], the semicolon [ ; ], brackets [( )], dash [–], hyphen [ - ], the exclamation mark [ ! ], the oblique stroke [ / ], the interrogative (question) mark [ ? ], inverted commas (quotation marks) [" "], suspension marks [...], the apostrophe [ ' ].

And there, drinking at the bar was - Finney!

The full stop signals the end of a declarative sentence. It indicates a strong pause. It is used most commonly at the end of a complete sentence. Besides that, it may be used as an instrument for dividing a text or a sentence into very small segments to underline the dynamic character of events or to create a stylistic device of parceling. There are the following peculiarities in the usage of full stops:

Ø Full stops are commonly placed after abbreviations:

ibid. No. 1 ff. e. g.

The comma is used to show a slight pause in a sentence. It helps to clarify the sense of statements and to prevent ambiguity. It separates the items in lists: The box contained a book, some pencils, and a knife. Opinions differ on the need for the final comma in such examples. If the items are all of the same kind, it can usually be omitted. If they are not, it is usually safer to retain the comma. The comma also separates two clauses when the first is not closely associated with the second: She is a famous singer, whilst her husband remains unknown. It introduces a pause where the eye might otherwise continue and mistake the sense of what is written: In the valley below, the villages looked small. It separates a sequence of adjectives which qualify a noun: He was an arrogant, pompous fellow. However, when the adjectives are of a different order or type, no comma is necessary: He was a distinguished foreign visitor. The comma marks the start and finish of a parenthetical phrase within a sentence: I am quite sure, despite my reservations, that he's the best man.

Brackets are used to insert a word or a phrase into a sentence (Most of the suspects (seven in all) were questioned by the police). The words inserted between brackets are usually an explanation or an illustration. The rules of the usage of brackets are such:

• Round bracketsare used to represent an aside or an extra piece of information which is closely related to the main subject of the sentence

- Goodwin argues that Thompson’s policies (which he clearly dislikes) would only increase the problem.

• Square bracketsare used to indicate that something is being added by the author. This is usually for clarification or comment.

- The reporter added that the woman [Mrs Wood] had suffered severe injuries.

- A mother wrote that her son was 'fritened [sic] to go to school'.

• When brackets are used at the end of a sentence, the full stop falls outside the bracket (like this).

• Statements inside brackets should be grammatically separate from the sentence. That is, the sentence should be complete, even if the contents of the brackets are removed.

- The republican senator (who was visiting London for a minor operation) also attended the degree ceremony.

• If a quotation contains a mistake in the original you can indicate that the error is not your own. This is indicated by the use of square brackets.

- The senior government minister who was recently acquitted of kerb-crawling claimed that at long last his 'trails [sic] and tribulations' were at an end.

• The expressions within brackets should be kept as brief as possible, so as not to interrupt the flow of the sentence.

• The use of brackets should be kept to a minimum. If used too frequently, they create a choppy, unsettling effect.

The dash is used to indicate a sudden change of thought, an additional comment, or a dramatic qualification: That was the end of the matter – or so we thought. Dashes can also be used to insert a comment or a list of things: Everything – furniture, paintings, and books – survived the fire.

The exclamation mark indicates surprise, gladness, irritation, despair, indignation, anger, alarm and other feelings and emotions: The ship is sinking! Jump in the lifeboat! When the exclamation mark is put at the end of a sentence, the nature of which is not exclamatory, it may express the speaker's irony, sorrow, nostalgia and other shades of modality. Exclamation marks should be used with restraint. The more frequently they occur, the weaker becomes their effect.

The interrogative mark is used to show that a question has been raised: Why is that woman staring at us?

The oblique stroke is used to separate items in a list: oil/water mix, italic/Roman type. 2003/04, etc. It might be useful when taking notes but it should be avoided in formal writing for the sake of elegance.

Suspension marks are typically used to signify emotional pauses of the speaker. They reflect such inner states of people as uncertainty, confusion or nervousness. They also create a stylistic device of aposiopesis.

The colon is used to introduce a strong pause within a sentence. It may anticipate a list of things: The car has a number of optional extras: sun roof, tinted windows, rear seat belts, and electrically operated wing mirrors. The colon separates two clauses which could stand alone as separate sentences, but which are linked by some relationship in meaning: My brother likes oranges: My sister hates them. The colon is used before a long quotation or a speech: Speaking at Caesar's funeral, Anthony addressed the crowd: "Friends, Romans, countrymen...". It is also used before a clause which explains the previous statement: The school is highly regarded: academic standards are high, the staff are pleasant, and the students enjoy going there. The colon can provide emphasis or create dramatic effect: There can be only one reason for this problem: John's total incompetence. It can precede an illustration: The vase contained beautiful flowers: roses, tulips, and daffodils. It can separate the title and the sub-title of a book or an article: Magical Realism: Latin-American fiction today.

The semicolon is half way between a comma and a colon. It marks a pause which is longer than a comma, but not as long as a colon. Semicolons are used between clauses which could stand alone, but which are closely related and have some logical connection. They punctuate lists of things in continuous prose writing: Neither of us spoke; we merely waited to see what would happen. He usually took great care; even so he made a few errors. Four objects lay on the desk: a large book; a spiral-bounded notepad; a glass vase containing flowers; and a silver propelling pencil. Semicolons help to avoid ambiguity in sentences composed of phrases of different length and a mixed content: The Chairman welcomed the President, Dr Garvey; the Vice-President Mr. Barncroft and his wife; several delegates from the United States; and members of the public who had been invited to attend.

The apostrophe is a raised comma. It is used to show possession (my mother's house, anybody's guess) and to punctuate contractions (There's nobody here. Where's Freddy? Don't fence me in).

II. The deliberate change of the spelling of the word is used to indicate the additional stress on the emphasized word or part of the word. Such graphical means as italics, bold type, change of spelling (laaaarge), capital letters, hyphenation are used.

Capital lettersare stylistically used to show the importance of particular words. They are always used for proper nouns, at the start of sentences, and for places and events of a public nature. It is necessary to avoid continuous capitals because they are hard to read.

Common nouns begin with capital letters in case of metaphoric personification (Every day Music comes into my house). All the letters of a word, a word-combination or a sentence may be capitalized to make these language units emphatic. All language units also become expressive when their initial letters are capitalized. The same effect can be achieved by the usage of italics (italic type) – a special kind of type which graphically makes linguistic units conspicuous and noticeable: aaabbbccc.

The hyphen is a short dash which connects words or parts of words. Hyphens form derivatives and compounds: re-enter, co-operate, multi-story, son-in-law, president-elect. There are some peculiarities in the usage of hyphens.

• Hyphens should be used where it is necessary top avoid ambiguity:

two-year-old cats, two year-old cats.

• They should also be used to distinguish terms which are spelled identically but which have different meanings:

reformation - “change for the better”, re-formation - “to form again”;

recover - “to regain control”, re-cover - “to cover again”.

• Hyphens are used when new terms are formed from compounds but they are dropped when the compound is accepted into common usage:

bath-tub - bathtub; book-shelf - bookshelf; club-house - clubhouse.

This phenomenon is visible in computer terminology where all three forms of a term may co-exist: word processor - word-processor - wordprocessor.

Text segmentationmeans the division of texts into smaller segments: paragraphs, chapters, sections and others. Some of the segments start with overlines (headings or headlines).

A paragraphis a group of sentences which deal with one topic and express a more or less completed idea or thought. The sentences in paragraphs are related to each other to produce an effect of unity. Paragraphs are used to divide a long piece of writing into separate sections. They give rhythm, variety and pace to writing.

Ø The following example is the definition of a paragraph:

The central thought or main controlling idea of a paragraph is usually conveyed in what is called a topic sentence. This crucial sentence which states, summarises or clearly expresses the main theme, is the keystone of a well-built paragraph. The topic sentence may come anywhere in the paragraph, though most logically and in most cases it is the first sentence. This immediately tells readers what is coming, and leaves them in no doubt about the overall controlling idea. In a very long paragraph, the initial topic sentence may even be restated or given a more significant emphasis in its conclusion.

• The recommended structure of a typical paragraph in academic writing is as follows. [It is rather like a mini-version of the structure of a complete essay.]

- The opening topic sentence

- A fuller explanation of the topic sentence

- Supporting sentences which explain its significance

- The discussion of examples or evidence

- A concluding or link sentence

• The start of a new paragraph is usually signalled by either a double space between lines, or by indenting the first line of the new paragraph.

• Very short paragraphs are often used in literary writing for stylistic effect.

• One of the most famous examples of this device comes from the Bible [John 11:35].

When Jesus therefore saw her weeping, and the Jews also weeping which came with her, he groaned in the spirit, and was troubled. And said, Where have ye laid him? They said unto him, Lord, come and see.

Jesus wept.

• The longer the paragraph, the more demands it makes on the reader.

• The last sentence in a paragraph is often used to provide a link to the next.

• The following example [written by E. M. Forster] shows the skilful use of an attention-grabbing first sentence, and a concluding sentence which whets the reader's appetite to know more about the subject:

John Skelton was an East Anglian: he was a poet, also a clergyman, and he was extremely strange. Partly strange because the age in which he flourished – that of the early Tudors – is remote from us, and difficult to interpret. But he was also a strange creature personally, and whatever you think of him when we've finished – and you will possibly think badly of him – you will agree that we have been in contact with someone unusual.

Chapters and sectionsare major text segments. They may be compared with fragments of mosaic, which form the whole picture when put together.

A headingis the name of a text or its segment. It tends to disclose the plot of narration. It should be garish and catching in order to attract the potential reader's attraction.

Text segmentation is just one of the components of layout. Layout is the physical organization of a text on the page, the screen, or any other medium of written communication. It refers to the visual conventions of arranging texts to assist reading and comprehension. Good layout includes effective use of the following common features: page margins, paragraphs, justification, type style, italics, capitals, indentation, line spacing, centering, type size, bold, underlining. There are particular conventions of layout in each functional style. Some of conventions are based purely on the function of the text, and some on tradition. The modern trend is towards layout which results in fast and easy reading of the page. Layout complements content in efficient communication. It facilitates the reading and the comprehensibility of the text. All readers are affected by these conventions, even though they may not be aware of them.

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