Arab World English Journal (AWEJ) Volume 14. Number 2 June 2023                                             Pp.254-267

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A Critical Stylistic Study of Bullying in R.J Palacio`s Wonder

 Israa Ezzet Hameed
  Department of English, College of Education for Women
University of Baghdad, Baghdad, Iraq

Fatimah Khudhair Hassoon
Department of English, College of Education for Women
University of Baghdad, Baghdad, Iraq
Corresponding Author:


Received:02/03/2023         Accepted:06/03/2023                 Published: 06/24/2023


Bullying is one of the most common problems that generate vigorous arguments in the community. It is widespread in all societies, especially among children and adolescents in schools. The present study investigates the concept of bullying in the American novel ‘Wonder’ by R. J. Palacio from a critical stylistic perspective. The importance of the study resides for every ordinary reader to be aware of the strategies used in bullying others. It also might be of value to scholars of sociology, critical stylistics, critical discourse studies, psychologists, and any scholar interested in the discourse of bullying. The current study is expected to answer the following question :  What is the most common type of bullying and the critical stylistic tools that bullies use to convey the concept of bullying in the analyzed data? The study aims at distinguishing the most common types of Bullying that bullies use in the selected novel and also identifying the critical stylistic tools that are employed by the bullies. The researchers adopt Jeffries’s (2010) critical stylistics modal to analyze the data under scrutiny. The study reveals that the most common form of bullying found is direct emotional bullying which is experienced by Julian and his schoolmates against the victim. Only eight stylistic tools are found in the five extracts through certain realizations related to the specific contexts in which they are initiated. The study concludes that the notion of bullying is represented through using most stylistic tools but with different ideologies.
Keywords: bullying, critical stylistic study, Jeffries’s critical stylistic modal, stylistics, Wonder

Cite as:  Hameed, I. E., &  Hassoon, F. K. (2023). A Critical Stylistic Study of Bullying in R.J Palacio`s Wonder.
Arab World English Journal, 14 (2) 254-267.


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Received: 02/03/2023
Accepted: 06/03/2023  
Published: 06/24/2023   

Israa Ezzet Hameed is an M.A. student at the Department of English, College of Education for Women, University of Baghdad. Her field of study is linguistics and her specialization is Critical Stylistics. Her interests include literature, pragmatics and stylistics.

Fatimah Khudair Hassoon is an assistant prof. of linguistics at the Department of English/ College of Education for Women / University of Baghdad. Her research interests include stylistics, and applied linguistics. ORCID: