By J.R. Martin, Robert Veel
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Extra info for Reading Science: Critical and Functional Perspectives on Discourses of Science
The reader is this case is not being apprenticed into the semantic configurations and formulaic structures of a scientific text. Rather they are being engaged in an intersubjective negotiation with distinct discourses by being positioned as occupying varying ‘reader positions’ that either concur or disagree with propositional meanings as the text unfolds. In addition to the writer/reader negotiation being enacted around propositional meanings, there is also the interwoven negotiations that occur between the propositions projected by the historical/scientific textual participants of the text.
Rostard cited in Shortland and Gregory 1991:7) The hyperbole of the above quote is underpinned by a liberal romanticism that highlights the discursive alignments of inclusive access and equity discourses with universalising statements about the edifying properties of knowledge. Such sentiments can be found in Gould’s discussions of the ‘true beauty of nature’ (BfB: 16) and ‘the intellectual delights that she offers [us]’ (BfB: 13). Within such sentiments are notions that ‘truth’ releases one from the ‘camera obscura’ of ideology: a truth that is articulated through the registerial forms of historical privilege.
She states of scientific accommodations that: [Their] main purpose is to celebrate rather than validate. And furthermore, they must usually be explicit in their claims about the value of the scientific discoveries they pass along. They cannot rely on the audience to recognise the significance of the information. Thus the work of epideictic rhetoric in science journalism requires adjustments of new information to an audience’s already held values and assumptions [my emphasis]. (Fahnestock in McRae 1993:20) CULTIVATING SCIENCE 39 Fahnestock identifies two major appeals that enable the epideictic argument.
Reading Science: Critical and Functional Perspectives on Discourses of Science by J.R. Martin, Robert Veel