Dissertation > Language, writing > FOREIGN > English > Writing,rhetoric

Functional Analysis of Advertising English

Author AiZuo
Tutor PanZuo
School Jilin University
Course Foreign Linguistics and Applied Linguistics
Keywords advertising English informative function persuasive function reflective function implication
CLC H315
Type Master's thesis
Year 2004
Downloads 2002
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The origin of the word ‘advertising’ is a Latin word ‘Advertere’, which means ‘to catch people’s attention’. During the medieval times, the word turned to ‘Advertise’, which means ‘to inform somebody something and catch his attention’. It was not until the end of 17th century that with the development of commerce the word ‘advertising’ became popular and obtained the meaning of ‘to spread commercial information’. As a product of the modern society, advertising has drawn more and more attention. Four different roles have been identified for advertising: marketing role, communication role, economic role and social role. The ANNA (America National Association of Advertisement) summed up the purposes of advertising as: awareness, comprehension, conviction and action. So the advertising serves two important purposes: one is that it keeps consumers informed of their selection alternatives; and the other is that it allows companies to complete more effectively for consumer dollars. The ultimate goal of advertising is persuasion. Language is the most important vehicle of communication and advertising language has been proved to play a vital role in advertising communication. Advertising language is the language used in advertisements that is a vehicle of elaborately planned messages loaded with persuasive intentions for sales promotion or other purposes. As a way of propagating and transmitting information, advertising English can not be underestimated because it is not only an artful technique in persuading <WP=84>people to buy, but also gradually has become a must for social communication which in turn reflects the development of society and economy.Scholars have studied advertising English from different angles. They have made great contributions in the study of advertising English. But their studies have some demerits. They have not considered the functions of advertising English in the performing of advertising. Though some scholars (Vestergaard & Schroder) pointed out that advertising English have three functions, that is, informative function, persuasive function and reflective function, they did not give an adequate analysis of them. And also they neglected that advertising English reflected some social cultural values, that is, the reflective function of advertising English. Guided by the accomplishments made in advertising English, this paper is devoted to the functional analysis of advertising English. The author holds a view that advertising English is such a complicated phenomenon that people cannot use one theory to explain all the functions of it. So the author adopts a comprehensive approach with the semantic and pragmatic approaches as the main theoretical framework. Chapter one is the introduction part of the thesis. It reviews the researches done on advertising English and puts forward the theme---functional analysis of advertising English. Chapter two concentrates on linguistic analysis of advertising English. As a method of conveying information, advertising English has its own linguistic features, such as brief, vivid, concise and attractive. In order to make advertisements read, heard and remembered easily and naturally, copywriters often use some linguistic strategies, such as, the elaborate choices of words, <WP=85>the selection of sentence structures, and the employment of rhetoric devices to realize the goal of informing.Chapter three is the main part of the thesis which concentrates on functional analysis of advertising English. It is obvious that no one will buy a product unless he knows something about it and the product seems to be of use value to him. Therefore, the prime function of advertising English, at the stage of introducing a new product, is the informative function. Since information is subordinate to persuasion, the author puts emphasis on the persuasive function and reflective function. The analysis of persuasive function touches not just one discipline, but multi-disciplines including psychology, semantics and pragmatics.As Wells (1995:27

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