Dissertation > Language, writing > Chinese > Grammar > Modern,modern syntax

A Contrastive Study of Grammatical Cohesive Devices in the Chinese and English Versions of Dawn Blossoms Plucked at Dusk

Author WangZuo
Tutor JieXiuQin
School Southwest Jiaotong University
Course Foreign Linguistics and Applied Linguistics
Keywords Cohesive Devices Dawn Blossoms Plucked at Dusk the Chinese and EnglishVersions
CLC H146
Type Master's thesis
Year 2012
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In1962, Halliday proposed the cohesion and coherence theory. The publication of the book Cohesion in English by Halliday and his wife Hasan in1976symbolizes the establishment of cohesion theory. They classify cohesion into five categories:reference, substitution, ellipsis, conjunction and lexical cohesion. Among these five categories, the former three are grammatical cohesive devices, and the other two are lexical cohesive devices. Since cohesion and coherence theory came into being, it received great attention from scholars home and abroad and is discussed widely. Chinese scholars like Hu Zhuanglin have also endeavored great efforts in analyzing and developing cohesion and coherence theory. In the book Textual Cohesion and Coherence, Hu Zhuanglin made a contrast between Chinese and English cohesive devices and discovered similarities and differences between them by analyzing examples from both Chinese and English.Lu Xun, as a representative of modern Chinese writers, his works express the thoughts of a generation. Thus the translation of his works can certainly help readers have a more profound knowledge about China. Dawn Blossoms Plucked at Dusk is Lu Xun’s only memory collection and the English version is translated by Yang Xianyi and his wife Gladys Yang. In this thesis we have analyzed the book from the perspective of grammatical cohesive devices. We find that the most frequently used cohesive device in both Chinese and English is reference, and among different types of references, zero anaphora is the most widely used in Chinese. Since Chinese is a parataxis language, and the subject in Chinese is often omitted, however, it is a different case in English. English is a hypotaxis language, and zero anaphoras in English are usually replaced by personal pronouns. Another difference in reference lies in demonstratives. Although it seems that "这/那" and "this/that" have almost the same meaning in Chinese and English, they are employed to express different range of identities. Thus in some circumstances "这" is equal to "that" or "那" equal to "this". As to substitution and ellipsis, they have the same classification in Chinese and English. However, they are not used in corresponding situations in Chinese and English. Substitution and ellipsis in English are usually replaced by repetition of certain words or using other lexis in Chinese. The thesis consists of five chapters, among which the first serves as the introduction of research material, purpose and significance of the study, research methodology and layout of the thesis. The main body of the thesis is from Chapter Two to Chapter Four. Chapter Two deals with the classification and introduction of cohesive devices according to Cohesion in English by Halliday. Chapter Three is a summary of the characteristics of the cohesive devices in Chinese and English respectively. A detailed comparison of each cohesive device is analysed in Chapter Four with examples from both the Chinese and English versions. The last chapter is about findings and limitations of the thesis.

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