27 April 2007

Discourse patterns synching spreadsheets now

two rhetoric books i'm finding useful:

"a theory of discourse" (kinneavy 1971)
"patterns for a purpose" (clouse 2003)

the latter proposes eight basic essay-patterns
(and i'm now substituting
spreadsheets for
yesterday's databases
so we can 'synch'
rules/formulae too)

  1. description (database dump without chrnological sorting)
  2. narration (ditto with chronological sorting)
  3. exemplification (generalised rule/formula with descriptive or narrative examples)
  4. process analysis (synching rules/formulae for future applications)
  5. comparison-contrast (explicitly synching two spreadsheet regions)
  6. cause-and-effect analysis (synching rules/formulae for past applications)
  7. classification and division (synching the vocabulary for descriptions of ranges)
  8. definition (synching a single vocabulary concept)

kinneavy tries to survey
rhetorical patterns at every level

some micropatterns (cf recent post Discourse as lists):

(short, long) eg synopsis/abstract followed by fleshed-out presentation

(long, short) eg summary at end

(parts, whole) eg (A, B, +, A+B)

(whole, parts) usually short-whole followed by longer-parts

(not-A, B) standard debate micropattern

(A, not-A) fair and balanced

(zoom-out, zoom-in) eg panorama with gradual increase in detail

(zoom-in, zoom-out) novels usually grab you via a closeup they only gradually contextualise

(hook, line) general attention-grabbing

(light, heavy) lead with a joke

(aux, main, aux) eg webpages where bodytext is surrounded by html-junk

(metadata, data) incl eg (date, title, byline)

(abstract, concrete) or (general, particular)

(old, new) cf (not-A, B)

(A?B) exploring uncertain relationship

(claim, proof)

(try, try, succeed)