Sentence-initial and and but in editorial writing: A comparison across Korean and American English newspapers

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Lewis, Sarah
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Department of English Language and Literature, Seoul National University
SNU Working Papers in English Language and Linguistics Vol. 13, pp. 105-124
Editorialssentence-initial-andsentence-initial-butAdditive connectivesconjunctive adverbialstext analysis
Despite proscription against the use of and and but in sentence-initial position, studies have found special functions of these words in written discourse. This study aims to investigate the functions and patterns of occurrence of sentence-initial and (SIA) and sentence-initial but (SIB) in editorial writings written by native English writers and advanced Korean English writers. Over 100,000 words of writings, a total of 421 editorials written between years 2014 and 2015, are separated by the native language of the writer and cross-analyzed. Editorial discourse prefers the function of SIA and SIB in the order of (i) indicating a discontinuity or shift with a previous discourse unit; (ii) indicating the development of an argument; and (iii) marking off a discourse unit by indicating the last item (or potential last-items) on a list. Though the pattern of preference in function was similar between natives and non-natives, non-native writers appear to be much more conservative in frequency of using the words under examination
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College of Humanities (인문대학)English Language and Literature (영어영문학과)SNU working papers in English language and linguisticsSNU working papers in English language and linguistics Vol.13 (2015)
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