Arab World English Journal (AWEJ) Volume 12. Number1. March 2021                                           Pp. 239-252

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Doing Stylistic Versus Critical Stylistic: An Analysis of If by Rudyard Kipling 

Suadad Fadhil Kadhum Al-Janabi
Department of English Language, College of Languages
University of Baghdad, Baghdad, Iraq

Nawar Hussein Rdhaiwi Al-Marsumi
Department of English Language, College of Languages
University of Baghdad, Baghdad, Iraq


Received: 9/27/2020               Accepted: 2/4/2021                Published: 3/24/2021   


This paper displays the ideological positioning as found in Rudyard Kipling’s poem If. It is a poem published in 1910. It presents the embedded ideologies and shows how the poet used the available linguistic resources to achieve his goal. The models of analysis adopted are Critical Stylistics as proposed by Lesley Jeffries (2010) and  Stylistic Analysis as submitted by McIntyre (2010).  The paper aims at identifying the poet’s beliefs to show that success is the outcome of self-control and a real sense of the values of things. It is a try to discover how the poet used various linguistic choices to build a message telling us how to deal with life confidently and identify a line of ideological positioning through Critical Stylistic strategies. The paper presents a theoretical background of the term stylistics and critical stylistics, explaining the adopted models; Analyzing the poem stylistically with a focus on critical stylistic regarding two tools: Representing and Negating for their dominant use in the poem and their effectiveness in interpreting the hidden ideologies. Stylistic devices are used because they steer the text to enable the writer to reach the intended goal. In conclusion, the paper displays that the poet uses the stylistic tools in a brilliant way that leads All, not only his son, to follow and consider it a moral lesson of life.
Keywords: critical stylistic analysis, stylistics, Rudyard Kipling poem If, material actions, mental processes, verbalization

Cite as: Al-Janabi, S.F.K., & Al-Marsumi , R.H.R.(2021). Doing Stylistic Versus Critical Stylistic: An Analysis of If by Rudyard Kipling.
Arab World English Journal, 12 (1) 239-252.


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Received: 9/27/2020
Accepted: 2/4/2021 
Published: 3/24/2021

Suadad Fadhil Kadhum holds a Master of Arts degree in English Language and Linguistics from the University of Baghdad, College of Languages. I am an Assistant Professor in the department of English at the College of Languages, and I have been teaching at the university since 1999. I published several papers concerning my major. My research interest is discourse, pragmatics, stylistics, and cognitive issues.

Nawar Hussein Al-Marsumi is an Assistant Professor, holding the Master of Arts degree in English Language and Linguistics obtained from the University of Baghdad, College of Education- Ibn Rushd. Since 1999, I have been working at Baghdad University as a teaching member in the Department of English. My major is the English language and linguistics, and I published several papers in contrastive studies, stylistics and pragmatics.