English Studies at NBU
ISSN / EISSN : 2367-5705 / 2367-8704
Published by: New Bulgarian University (10.33919)
Total articles ≅ 89
Latest articles in this journal
English Studies at NBU, Volume 7, pp 167-186; https://doi.org/10.33919/esnbu.21.2.3
The choice between since and because allows language users to provide rationality which is part of the cognitive functions of language. Different conditions have been shown to explicate this alternation, with little attention paid to the clausal weight. The present paper shows how expression of rationality is alternated between choosing a since or because, since both have the semantic capacity to do so, in certain contexts. The study uses a simple measurement method to show the extent to which clausal weight relates to this alternation. Relying on corpus data from a well-known variety representing Nigerian English, the present study shows that the choice between since and because is related to a number of factors such as the type of text producing the usages. With 1074 usages showing such interchangeable usages extracted from academic and media text types in written Nigerian English, it is shown that, at least in the variety under examination, the choice of since over because as a rationality expresser is scarce, and that overall pattern can be predicted on the basis of certain contexts including clausal weight and ordering pattern. The scarcity of since as a rationality expresser is perhaps a reflection of interference from the local languages, which do not have semantic equivalents.
English Studies at NBU, Volume 7, pp 261-273; https://doi.org/10.33919/esnbu.21.2.8
This paper focuses on Thomas Hardy’s A Pair of Blue Eyes in discussing certain peculiarities of narration. The numerous descriptions of people and scenes in the book are examined as basic building blocks used by the architecturally trained novelist to carry vital narrative information. This decision is approached by way of utilising ideas from the realms of phenomenology, cinema and photographic theory to prove that in addition to carrying aesthetic merits, Hardy’s descriptions are intricate data containers that reflect how the human mind processes experience.
English Studies at NBU, Volume 7, pp 187-208; https://doi.org/10.33919/esnbu.21.2.4
Morocco, a multilingual country with historical and geo-political legacies, has opened a hot debate on languages recently. Within this debate, this article investigates spontaneous comments in social media on languages in Morocco, especially adopting English as a first foreign language. It aims to bring this topic to the surface and thus discuss it in the light of research on language attitudes and language awareness. To do so, it analyses the reactions to texts about the declarations by the Minister of Higher Education shared in social networks and sites. The data consisting of 2,018 comments is classified according to 12 frequent patterns whose frequencies are calculated. The findings show that most of Moroccans have positive attitudes towards English while some show opposing reactions towards French. These participants hold ambivalent opinions about the rest of languages used in Morocco; however, they tend to insist on Morocco having a clear language policy which, seemingly, prioritises the mother tongues, Arabic and Amazigh. The discussions show that some investigated reactions are mitigated as they may be illusionary.
English Studies at NBU, Volume 7, pp 227-244; https://doi.org/10.33919/esnbu.21.2.6
Postmodern literary texts have been exploring characters that are whimsically strange. The tacit plots in the postmodern textual space enable the writers to construct and manifest the mental space of the characters in the textual world. The Rise of Life on Earth written by Joyce Carol Oates concocts the emotional estrangement of the protagonist, Kathleen Hennessy. Decrypting the text amplifies the unabating efforts of Kathleen to survive in a world that has been portrayed as a larger, repressive and pernicious family. Her masquerade to be a shy, passive and well-behaved girl hides the menacing vengeance that has culminated as a result of abuses and afflictions. Her mental spaces are constructed during the course of narration. This paper purports to scrutinize the fragmented psyche of Kathleen and the conceptual integration of mental space and textual space that replicates both social and individualistic reality and expands the understanding of Oates’ text.
English Studies at NBU, Volume 7, pp 127-146; https://doi.org/10.33919/esnbu.21.2.1
While marking importance and relevance in academic discourse has been a widely researched topic, markers of lesser significance have so far been understudied. The article therefore focuses on some of the discoursal means of expressing lesser importance in conference presentations. The corpus of the study comprises recordings of 20 presentations in English at international linguistics conferences by speakers of various cultural and linguistic backgrounds. The methodology follows Deroey and Taverniers’s (2012) study of lecture discourse, whereby depending on the way lesser importance is expressed, the markers are grouped under five categories. Their methodology is checked against the data provided by the transcriptions of the conference recordings to ascertain the extent to which it is applicable to other spoken academic genres. The ultimate objective is to provide steppingstones for interpreting information and distinguishing between what is important and relevant and less so in conference presentations, as well as for the identification of presenters’ motivation for employing this type of metadiscourse.
English Studies at NBU, Volume 7, pp 147-166; https://doi.org/10.33919/esnbu.21.2.2
In standard British/American English, some transitive verbs, which are ontologically specified for objects, may be used with the objects not overtly expressed (for example, leave), while other transitive verbs do not permit this syntactic behavior (for example, vacate). The former have been referred to as verbs that allow implicit arguments. This study shows that while verbs such as vacate do not ideally allow implicit arguments in standard British/American English, this is permitted in Ugandan English (a non-native variety), thereby highlighting structural asymmetries between British/American English and Ugandan English, owing mainly to substrate influence and analogization. The current study highlights those structural asymmetries and ultimately uncovers some characteristic features in the structural nativization process of English in Uganda, thereby contributing to the growing larger discourse meant to fill the gaps that had characterized World Englishes scholarship, where thorough delineations of Ugandan English have been virtually absent.
English Studies at NBU, Volume 7, pp 209-226; https://doi.org/10.33919/esnbu.21.2.5
This paper dwells on the issue of selfhood in Elizabeth Barrett Browning’s Diary (1831 – 1832). It explores individuation against three major presences in the poetess’s life: her father (and family), Hugh Stuart Boyd, and literature. The employed strategy of research includes a phenomenological (interspersed with feminist touches) focus on select excerpts from the Diary which reveal the writer’s concern for Self as the recognition of the priority of a precursory Other. Observations are made on the limits of human perception, time and space as human variables, the ontological essence of interpretation, and memory as a premise for cognizing life as care. A rare example of prose-fiction in the poetess’s oeuvre, her diary could be read as an instance of simultaneous self-nullification and self-affirmation, which offers possibilities for a dialectical definition of female genius as dialogue through narrative.
English Studies at NBU, Volume 7, pp 245-260; https://doi.org/10.33919/esnbu.21.2.7
Tony Harrison is a contemporary British author whose poetry is highly influential in encountering the issue of identity and class struggles. As a working-class student, Harrison was subject to prejudice and discrimination for his working-class accent. This paper investigates two of his highly admired poems, “On Not Being Milton” and “Them & uz” from a cultural standpoint, mainly concentrated on John Fiske’s theory of power and language. The role of language in the context of his poems is probed. The multiaccentuality of language is represented in his poetry and these two poems become the site of struggle for the imperialising and the localising power. It is intended to illuminate the sought space of identity which Harrison is constantly referring to as a member of the English working-class society. Lastly, the social and personal relationship between Harrison and Milton has been explored positing Harrison in a transcendental context in his relationship with Milton.
English Studies at NBU, Volume 7, pp 69-86; https://doi.org/10.33919/esnbu.21.1.5
It is considered that the Puritans that populated New England in the 17th century left a distinctive mark on the American culture. The article explores some projections of Puritan legacy in two American novels of different periods – Nathaniel Hawthorne’s The Scarlet Letter (1850) and Stephen King’s Carrie (1974). After establishing a connection between the Puritan writings and gothic literature, the two novels are analyzed in terms of some Puritan projections, among which are the problem of guilt and the acceptance of an individual in the society. Some references regarding the idea of the witch and the interpretations it bears, especially in terms of the female identity, are also identified. Despite the different approach of the authors in terms of building their characters, those references are mostly used in a negative way, as an instrument of criticism and exposing inconvenient truths.
English Studies at NBU, Volume 7, pp 51-68; https://doi.org/10.33919/esnbu.21.1.4
This article explores the assimilation politics in Mira Jacob’s Novel The Sleepwalker’s Guide to Dancing (2013). The intersection of memory, trauma, and mourning with reference to immigrant experience is discussed. In terms of assimilation, Barkan’s six stage model is critiqued, and diasporic ‘hybridity’ is proposed as an alternative to the notion of total assimilation. In the analysis of traumatic experience, the paper makes reference to Caruth’s formulations of the ‘abreactive model’. The Sleepwalker’s Guide to Dancing (2013) is a transcultural text that represents the gap that truly exists between the first-generation immigrants and their offspring. It is a typical trauma novel featuring timeless and unspeakable experiences. The novel does not present a postcolonial collective trauma but invariably an example of diasporic imagined trauma. By presenting two contrasting generations in her novel, Mira Jacob attempts to highlight the dilemmas that baffle diasporas in the United States particularly of those that resist assimilation. Much of the narrative projects the haunting presence of home, and the anguish of personal loss experienced by first generation immigrants. Moreover, the novel questions the nostalgic and romantic engagements with the past and it promotes a bold affirmation of the culture of the adopted land. In other words, Mira Jacob calls for more genuine engagements with the new culture that the second and the third-generation immigrants are more exposed to than their home culture because their in-between status leaves them with no choice.