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“It’s really fascinating work”: Differences in Evaluative Adjectives across Academic Registers

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Chapter Summary

The properties of academic speech are much less well known than those of academic writing. As part of an attempt to redress this imbalance, this paper investigates evaluative adjectives and their intensifiers in a portion of the MICASE corpus and compares these findings with those from a corpus of academic writing. Results suggest that adjectival evaluation in this spoken register is much more prevalent, but not quite as polarized, as originally envisaged. The study also confirms that even in academic speech really (at least in positive contexts) has become delexicalized, being largely reduced to an alternate for very.



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