This article aims to examine the role of literature in reading education from a linguistic perspective of meaning and structuring. It is assumed that the conventional or non-literary use of language is referential (using Widdowson’s model), engaging with and relating itself to the indexical propositional content outside the text. Readers make out the connection to achieve an understanding. But in literary discourse, the ‘mode of meaning’ is representational where nothing in the immediate exterior reality can be referred to and the context has to be created within language signs. It is also assumed that conventional discourse normally gives structural cues while the literary discourse does not. Using extracts from Taiwanese senior high school textbooks as examples, this article works on the assumption of how linguistic features can affect the reading process and lead to a new understanding of the role of literary texts in reading development.
|Keywords:||Literature, ESL/EFL Reading, Meaning, Structuring|
Department of Linguistics and English Language, Lancaster University, UK
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