Pragmatic Interpretations of Raised Arguments in English Novels

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Abhinan Wongkittiporn


This study investigates pragmatic interpretations of the raised arguments in English novels. The investigation of the raised arguments in this study covers four constructions in English. There are tough constructions (i.e., Peter is difficult to please), passive constructions (i.e., The book was sold by him), raising constructions (i.e., The book seems to sell well) and middle constructions (The book sells well). The previous studies in this field paid attention to the study of pragmatic interpretations of the raised argument in newspapers and academic prose. This study contributes to field by investigating the use of raised argument in English novels. The data collection in this study selected the best-seller novels (, which are The Portrait of a Lady: The Turn of the Screw Washington Square written by James (2021), Pride and Prejudice written by Austen (2018) and The Hobbit written by Tolkien (2020). The contents in these novels is suitable for everyone to read. A corpus of 150,000 words contains 30 tokens. The framework used to investigate the raised argument follows Mair (1987) and Vicentini (2003). In order to gain the reliability and accuracy of data analysis, three English instructors were asked to validate the data analysis. The findings and discussion show that the raised arguments follow the pragmatic discourse of given and new information. Accordingly, this study will be useful for learners of EFL and ESL to develop pragmatic competence in writing novels and short stories. 


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Wongkittiporn, A. (2022). Pragmatic Interpretations of Raised Arguments in English Novels. Journal of Liberal Arts Prince of Songkla University, 14(1), 27–54.
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