Visualisation in corpus-based discourse studies

Laurence Anthony*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

12 Citations (Scopus)


One of the primary goals of discourse analysis is providing us with an understanding of how written and spoken language influences and is influenced by social identities and relationships between people (Paltridge 2012: 2). In short, it is the study of language in use. Clearly, the interactions and connections between people and language are complex, so it is not surprising that discourse analysts dedicate huge amounts of time to the close reading of texts and the construction of detailed models that explain this complexity. Discourse analysts often exemplify these models using extended text extracts and quotations. It is also common to see researchers using diagrams and infographics to show discourse structure models, turn taking procedures and other features of discourse. However, discourse analysts are much less likely to use bar charts, line charts, scatter plots and other visualisation techniques that are commonly used in quantitative data analysis. As an example, out of the 23 figures included in Paltridge’s (2012) introduction to discourse analysis, not one can be considered to be a quantitative data visualisation. Of course, this is not surprising considering the qualitative nature of the subject matter.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationCorpus Approaches to Discourse
Subtitle of host publicationA Critical Review
PublisherTaylor and Francis
Number of pages28
ISBN (Electronic)9781351716079
ISBN (Print)9781138895782
Publication statusPublished - 2018 Jan 1

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Arts and Humanities(all)
  • Social Sciences(all)


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