Methods of Text and Discourse Analysis provides the most comprehensive overview currently available of linguistic and sociological approaches to text and discourse analysis. Among the 10 linguistic and sociological models surveyed in this book some of the more important are Grounded Theory, Content Analysis, Conversation Analysis and Critical Discourse Analysis. The book presents each approach according to a standardised format, which allows for direct systematic comparisons. The fully annotated lists of sources provide readers with an additional means of evaluation of the competing analytical methods. Interdisciplinary and international in its aim, Methods of Text and Discourse Analysis suggests the benefits both linguists and sociologists will derive from a more intimate knowledge of each others' methods and procedures. By enabling readers to compare, contrast and apply a range of methods and approaches this book will be an essential resource for both students and researchers.
Chapter 2: What is a Text?
What is a Text?
Towards a Definition1
What is a text?’ This question has occupied text linguistics and discourse analysis since their beginnings,2 although the two different scientific approaches are currently converging more and more. Both text and discourse are restricted, in everyday parlance, to written (texts) on the one hand and spoken (discourse) on the other, although this is contested to some extent in the scholarly literature (see Brünner & Graefen 1994a). Apart from this, texts are often considered to be longer pieces of writing. The word evokes the idea of a book, a letter, or a newspaper. The decisive contribution of linguistics in this respect has been to introduce, in the face of such popular opinions, a concept of text that ...