Arab World English Journal (AWEJ) Volume 12. Number2 June 2021 Pp.238-250
The Use of Metadiscursive Markers in Letters of Recommendation: An Investigation of
Hmoud S. Alotaibi
Department of English Language,
College of Sciences and Humanities in Dawadmi,
Shaqra University, Saudi Arabia
Received: 4/5/2021 Accepted: 5/28/2021 Published: 6/24/2021
This study aimed to investigate gender variations in letters of recommendation. It used the metadiscourse theory with respect to the following resources: hedges, boosters, attitude markers, engagement markers, and self-mentions. The findings showed that hedges devices were the least frequent in both groups, but at the same time were used more by males compared to female recommenders. Boosters, on the other hand, were highly frequent in both corpora and, like hedges, were employed more frequently in the male group. Interestingly, while both gender groups shared using specific hedging and boosting tokens, each gender group appeared to favor using certain devices. The attitude markers were the most frequent in the two samples and appeared more in the female group. Similarly, while both groups used specific attitude markers, each gender group seemed to use specific attitude markers. The engagement markers revealed the highest divergence between the two groups, as they appeared more frequently in female letters. Finally, both gender groups employed self-mentions equally, but female letters seemed to favor using the plural forms. The study closes with some pedagogical implications by highlighting how the theory of metadiscourse can be of importance for academics.
Keywords: gender variations, interactional markers, letters of recommendation, metadiscourse
Cite as Alotaibi, H. S. (2021). The Use of Metadiscursive Markers in Letters of Recommendation: An Investigation of Gender Variations.
Arab World English Journal, 12 (2) 238-250.
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