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The use of Progressives in Irish English News: Contexts

The use of Progressives in Irish English News: Contexts

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An essay for the 2011 Undergraduate Awards (Ireland) Competition by Stephanie O'Gay Garcia. Originally submitted for BA Joint Honours in English and Spanish at Queen University Belfast, with lecturer Dr John Kirk in the category of Languages & Linguistics
An essay for the 2011 Undergraduate Awards (Ireland) Competition by Stephanie O'Gay Garcia. Originally submitted for BA Joint Honours in English and Spanish at Queen University Belfast, with lecturer Dr John Kirk in the category of Languages & Linguistics

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Published by: Undergraduate Awards on Aug 31, 2012
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10/27/2013

 
The use of Progressives in Irish English News:Contexts
1 |Page
 
Index1. Introduction
 The present study aims to observe the different contexts in which theprogressive aspect can be found in the English language, more specifically inIrish English language and even more specifically in news genres. These variouscontexts and collocations may help us form a better understanding of how theprogressive is used. The methodology used to study this is
corpus linguistics
. The corpus-based approach is a highly effective method for both the quantitative andqualitative study of a language as it permits us to process and manipulate datarapidly through the use of a computer (McEnery et al 6).My analytical model will be mostly based on one work: Ute Römer’s‘Progressives, Patterns, Pedagogy’, which deals in great depth with theprogressive aspect. I have chosen to base most my study on one section of herbook: ‘The use of progressives in spoken English (I) – contexts’. To obtain her2 |Page
1. Introduction32. Contexts of the progressive: a quantitative approach5
 
2.1
The development of the progressive in different registers: BroadcastNews vs. Press News
6
 
2.2
Distributions of the auxiliary verb TO BE
6
 
2.3
Progressives and subjects
9
 
2.4
Progressives and Negation
11
 
2.5
Progressives and other lexical-grammatical phenomena
11
 
2.6
Verbs used with the progressive
133. Results and conclusion134. Critical reflections145. References166. Appendices17Ap. 1
Registers – Broadcast News VS Press News
17Ap. 2
Distribution of the verb TO BE
17Ap. 3
Distribution of tense forms
19Ap. 4
Contractions of TO BE
20Ap. 5
Distribution of subjects
20Ap. 6
Negation
22Ap. 7
Interrogatives
22Ap. 8
If-clauses
23Ap. 9
Relative clauses
23Ap. 10
Verbs used
24
 
data, Römer performs a search on a hundred frequent verbs in their
 –ing
formsand then selects a maximum of 200 examples of each at random. I, however, didnot consider this the most effective method and instead have chosen to replicateNadja Nesselhauf’s method used in her work ‘The spread of the progressive andits ‘future’ use’, in which she searches for the
 –ing
form of any verb by using thewildcard function of the corpus program and also for the different tense forms of the verb TO BE. The data I have chosen to study is a section of ICE-Ireland, a 1,079,775word corpus directed primarily by John M. Kirk and Jeffery L. Kallen whichcontains a variety of texts from numerous registers belonging to the entirety of Ireland, both north and South. As studying the entire corpus would require aproject of a larger scale I have chosen to narrow down my work to two genres:Broadcast News and Press News.In a previous study I performed on the entire corpus of ICE-Ireland I foundthe following statistics in relation to how many progressives could be found ineach genre. These were obtained by counting the examples of the progressivefound in each genre and then performing relative frequencies on each one incomparison to their corpus size and a common denominator:3 |Page

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