While acknowledging the importance of specific lexis in profiling discourse communities, studies on academic discourse have paid growing attention to general lexis and its disciplinary specificity. This is particularly true of recent approaches to phraseology in English for Academic Purposes (EAP), including both statistically significant clusters and grammar patterns and semantic sequences. The current paper explores the notion of semantic sequences through a case study of sequences involving relative what. Based on a corpus of academic journal articles in the field of history (2.5 million words), the analysis highlights co-occurrence of what with a range of signals referring to a shift in time perspectives or attribution, and points to the "re-defining" function of what, introducing a re-formulation of what has just been said or proposing an interpretation on the basis of the cotext. A tentative classification of the sequences is provided, building on previous studies on a local grammar of evaluation. The sequences are shown to highlight the argumentative voice of historians interacting with their sources and their discourse community, by showing awareness of different interpretations of people and events in history.
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|Data di pubblicazione:||2017|
|Titolo:||What came to be called: Evaluative what and authorial voice in the discourse of history|
|Digital Object Identifier (DOI):||10.1515/text-2016-0035|
|Appare nelle tipologie:||Articolo su rivista|
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