Linguistics and the Human Sciences, Vol 10, No 3 (2014)

Judge’s Persuasive Language in a Chinese Civil Case: A SFL Perspective

Wang Zhenhua
Issued Date: 14 Dec 2015

Abstract


This paper looks into the linguistic forces of persuasion of the woman judge in a Chinese civil trial. The judge was mediating the conflicts of the two parties in a local court. The two parties were in strong disagreement over compensation and the price for purchasing the bungalow of the plaintiff. She was successful in solving the conflicts. This paper approaches the mediation of persuasion from the Systemic Functional model, and examines the generic features in the context of culture and register features in the context of situation. The analysis of genre finds that she uses the strategy of interference, elaboration and suggestion/proposal to fulfill her solution. The analysis of register finds that she employs proper linguistic tactics in the changing context of situation. Her proper tactics instantiates her strategy and the coupling of the two contribute to the successful mediation. One implication this paper draws is that one’s attitude changes the others’ attitude.

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DOI: 10.1558/lhs.v10i3.29300

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