ENGAGEMENT MARKERS IN INTRODUCTORY TEXTBOOKS
This article is meant to contribute to the increasingly prominent research on academic discourse and metadiscourse. The framework used in the article is based on Hyland (2005a, 2005b), who distinguishes between interactional and interactive metadiscourse features. Among interactional ones, which are used to build the writer-reader interaction, Hyland identifies engagement markers - means of ‘engaging’ the reader more explicitly in the process of weaving academic discourse. Engagement markers are further classified and divided into the five basic types: reader pronouns, directives, questions, appeals to shared knowledge and personal asides. The research question in the article is exploring engagement markers in academic discourse, or more precisely, in introductory textbooks. Using functional analysis, we have identified and interpreted the five types of engagement markers in the corpus, which is an introductory textbook we consider suitable and interesting for the proposed goal. The results of the analysis show that the most frequent engagement markers in the corpus are reader pronouns, directives and appeals to shared knowledge. Questions and personal asides are used infrequently. The pragmatic contribution of using engagement markers in the corpus is building interaction in a dominantly informal way. Generally speaking we may conclude that introductory textbooks seem to be losing the essentially unobjectionable tone – the writer, though preparing an introductory textbook, may intentionally engage the reader much more than he used to do some time ago. In this way the paper is a contribution to explaining more global changes in the overall tone in academic discourse of linguistic literature nowadays.