A Discourse Analysis of Mrs. Bracknell’Dramatic Speech Under Interpersonal Function

Genghua XIA, Xiangqun LIU


Based on the theory of interpersonal function in systematic functional linguistics, this study will explore the literary significance of the play The Importance of Being Earnest from the perspectives of mood, modality and appraisal system. Mrs. Bracknell’s dialogue will be chosen as the corpus, and qualitative and quantitative research methods will be used to analyze the speech characteristics of the protagonists in the dialogue. This paper will explore the role and influence of dialogic language on the construction of character characteristics and interpersonal relationships, and will, hopefully, help to prove the feasibility of using systemic functional linguistics to interpret literary works.



The Importance of Being Earnest; Interpersonal meaning; Mood system; Modality system; Appraisal system

Full Text:



Durey, J. (1988). Middlemarch: The role of the functional triad in the portrayal of hero and heroine. London: Printer.

Fan, Z. Y. (2019). Interpretation of Mrs. Macbeth’s language from the perspective of interpersonal function. Journal of Lanzhou Institute of Education, 35(07), 147-148 & 161.

Fowler, R. (1981). Essays on style and language: Linguistic and critical approaches to literary style. London: Routledge & Kegan Paul.

Halliday, M. A. K. (1964a). The linguistic study of literary texts. In H. Lunt (Ed.), Proceedings of the ninth international congress of linguist (pp.302-307). London: Mouton de Gruyter.

Halliday, M. A. K. (1964b). Descriptive linguistics in literary studies. In A. Duthie (Ed.), English studies: Third series (pp.23-39). London: Edinburgh University Press.

Halliday, M. A. K. (1985). An introduction to functional grammar. London: Edward Arnold.

Han, S. Y. (2011). Interpersonal meaning in Dubliners. Shanghai International Studies University.

Li, Z. Z. (2004). Interpersonal meaning in discourse. Shanghai: Shanghai Foreign Language Education Press.

Martin, J. R. (1997). Working with functional grammar. New York: St.Martin’s Press.

McCathy, M., & Carter, R. A. (1994). Language as discourse: Perspective for language teaching. London: Longman.

Miao, X. W., & Lei, L. (2019). A SFL-based approach to ecological discourse analysis [J/OL]. Shandong Foreign Language Teaching, (1), 13-22.

Wang, J. J. (2018). Research on interpersonal meaning in Dubliners and a clean, well-lighted place. College English Teaching & Research, (05), 57-59.

Wilde, O. (2006). The importance of being earnest (pp.6-42). London and New York: W. W. Norton& Company.

Sinclair, J. Mch. (1965). Linguistic meaning in a literary text. London: Cambridge University Press.

Yang, X. Y., & Shi, X. J. (2015). Analysis of the interpersonal meaning of “Self-centeredness” A case study of Zhong Xiaosha in The Good Moon at Home. Contemporary Rhetoric, (2), 66-75.

Zhang, J. P. (2015). A modal grammatical framework from the psychological perspective: Interpreting the interpersonal meaning of Peter Pan. Journal of PLA University of Foreign Languages, (6), 130-137.

Zhang, L. (2014). A study of interpersonal meaning of linguistic modality: A case study of Catherine and Heathcliff’s dialogue in wuthering heights. Journal of Xi’an International Studies University, (2), 55-58.

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.3968/12625


  • There are currently no refbacks.

Copyright (c) 2023 Author(s)

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.

Share us to:   


  • How to do online submission to another Journal?
  • If you have already registered in Journal A, then how can you submit another article to Journal B? It takes two steps to make it happen:

1. Register yourself in Journal B as an Author

  • Find the journal you want to submit to in CATEGORIES, click on “VIEW JOURNAL”, “Online Submissions”, “GO TO LOGIN” and “Edit My Profile”. Check “Author” on the “Edit Profile” page, then “Save”.

2. Submission

Online Submission: http://cscanada.org/index.php/ccc/submission/wizard

  • Go to “User Home”, and click on “Author” under the name of Journal B. You may start a New Submission by clicking on “CLICK HERE”.
  • We only use four mailboxes as follows to deal with issues about paper acceptance, payment and submission of electronic versions of our journals to databases: caooc@hotmail.com; office@cscanada.net; ccc@cscanada.net; ccc@cscanada.org

 Articles published in Cross-Cultural Communication are licensed under Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 (CC-BY).


Address: 1055 Rue Lucien-L'Allier, Unit #772, Montreal, QC H3G 3C4, Canada.
Telephone: 1-514-558 6138 
Website: Http://www.cscanada.net; Http://www.cscanada.org 
E-mail:caooc@hotmail.com; office@cscanada.net

Copyright © Canadian Academy of Oriental and Occidental Culture