What is meant by style and stylistics?

Topics: Linguistics, Literature, Grammar Pages: 3 (934 words) Published: October 14, 2013
What is meant by style and stylistics?
Style is concerned with the artful expression of idea and stylistics is the bridge that links the idea of style to the analysis of literary texts through the tool of linguistics. The 19th century, that witnessed evolution in the field of biography, historiography, anthropology and others, could not remain unattached to immutable linguistic and stylistic norms in literature. Linguistic study was esoteric in the beginning and severely criticized as, "pretension of scientific accuracy, obsession with an extensive; cumbersome and recondite terminology; display of analytic techniques; scorn of all that is subjective, impressionistic, mentalistic."(Fowler 1) But the struggling efforts and revision of opinions made it possible for linguists to make their study acceptable even by literary critics. Linguistics gave birth to another branch named stylistics. For stylistic interpretation, a stylist views the whole text as a unit, not as a string of sentences, while a linguist's concern is to make out the link between the sentences. The major difference between linguistic and stylistic study is that "whereas the maximum unit in linguistics is the sentence, larger unit, the text, serves as the basis of stylistic analysis."(Fowler 17) The concept of style belongs to the very beginning of literary thought in Europe. About style Abrams opines: Style is the linguistic expression in prose or verse – it is how speakers or writers say whatever it is that they say. The style of a particular work or writer has been analyzed in the terms of the characteristic modes of its diction, or choices of words, its sentence structure and syntax; the density and types of its figurative language; the patterns of its rhythm, component sounds, and other formal features; and its rhetorical claims and devices. (203) A stylistician studies the style and method that an author uses in his artistic creation. It applies the amplification of linguistics to approach...
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