ITO Akihiro Aichi Gaknin University, General Education, Associate professor, 教養部, 助教授 (60319184)
YAMASHITA Junko Nagoya University, Graduate School of International Development, Associate professor, 国際開発研究科, 助教授 (00220335)
|Budget Amount *help
¥2,600,000 (Direct Cost: ¥2,600,000)
Fiscal Year 2003: ¥600,000 (Direct Cost: ¥600,000)
Fiscal Year 2002: ¥700,000 (Direct Cost: ¥700,000)
Fiscal Year 2001: ¥1,300,000 (Direct Cost: ¥1,300,000)
There were two main studies carried out in this project. The first study investigated linguistic factors that may be related to people's judgement of written text difficulty by utilizing information from a corpus. One of the descriptive features in the British National Corpus, perceived level of difficulty (Wrilev), was used for this purpose. All written texts in the BNC are categorized into Low, Medium, and High subcategories of Wrilev by people who collected texts for the BNC according to their judgements about text difficulty. This feature was analysed in three respects: (l) distribution of Wrilev in relation to two other descriptive features, (2) average length of words and sentences, (3) Hayashi's quantification method type III. The following points appeared:(a) Judgements of text difficulty revealed some kind of systematicity, which could be seen to suggest reliability, (b) Word length was not related to judgements, (c) Sentence length was related to judgements concerning informative texts, (d) Topic specificity did not have a systematic relationship with judgements. These results suggested that syntactic complexity and people's background knowledge have relationships with perception of text difficulty.
Secondly, in this project, focusing on genre categories in the BNC, the dimensions revealed by the multivariate analysis will be interpreted linguistically. In contrast, register variation will be explicitly identified by dealing with a sociolinguistic variable which is fairly systematically associated with 'class' in the BNC. Therefore, another aim of the paper is to clarify the difference between genre and register. For that reason, to begin with, I will establish the definition of terms such as text types, genre and register. Actually these terms are all used, in more or less similar ways, to identify homogeneous groups of texts, so an understanding of these overlapping items is necessary before the design of the paper can be made explicit.