Constructing stance by means of attribution How is the ‘evaluative space’ filled in science popularizations in English?

  1. Izaskun Elorza ed. lit. 1
  2. Miriam Pérez-Veneros 1
  1. 1 Universidad de Salamanca

    Universidad de Salamanca

    Salamanca, España


Publisher: Lund University Press

ISBN: 978-91-87833-19-9

Year of publication: 2014

Type: Book


This chapter presents a study on the relation between the introduction of authorial voices in science popularization articles and the construction of the journalists’ stance. Science popularizations are polyphonic texts which, similarly to other media genres, are typically constructed by relying on other voices apart from the journalist’s. When an external voice is being introduced in the text, there is a transition area between the voice which was speaking so far and the new voice. In this chapter it is claimed that this transition area functions as an evaluative space which can be potentially used by journalists to include their own stance towards the information presented. In order to support and illustrate this, we present an analysis of some of the elements in the evaluative spaces which are found when journalists introduce authorized sources by means of direct speech constructions in popularizations in the British press. Our results show that journalists of these texts construct their stance by two different means, either overtly through the use of reporting verbs and evaluative expressions, or covertly by blurring the boundaries between their voices and the voices from experts.