As an experienced classroom who has spoken verbally since the infancy, it's easy to switch from one group of people to your voice, vocabulary, and syntax. Often, without thinking about it, you are talking to your parents differently than your teacher, and differently from the two groups when you are alone with your friends. They would not dream of the same patterns in the dressing room and in the shrine of the temple.
Most writers understand the concept of audience and why it is important to understand who the audience is in composing. Yet, simply to understand the "out" of the audience is just the beginning of experienced writers. Effective writing, writing that works and providing the intended message and effect must fit into the discourse community you want to serve.
What is a discourse community? Discourse community is a group of people who speak "the same language", ie people who are interested in certain topics, share knowledge with themes and have a common vocabulary to discuss themes. Have you ever been around a group of people who shared the common passion you know nothing about? Perhaps a particular sport or activity, artistic talent or work, but it is likely that without sharing the same passion, it is difficult to follow the conversation. This is because you are not a member of the discourse community. While speaking the same language as you – English – the context of the discourse community changes the language use and the language content.
You already belong to a number of discourse communities, family, ethnic and religious backgrounds, as well as personal interest and activity. Students enter the larger discourse community of the institution's institution as well as numerous smaller discourse communities, including departments, clubs and organizations, as well as major publishers and programs. Employees enter the larger discourse community of their employer and, depending on their size and focus, the institution can enter smaller discourse communities. For example, in a hospital, a nurse can be the discourse community of the hospital, the nursing staff and the emergency department.
Why is it important for the writers to take the discourse community?
Discourse is a conversation or a longer and more formal exchange of conversation or writing. Discourse is important because we communicate in the social world in which we live and work. Social groups communicating internally are called communities. A community is a group of people that are linked to a common goal or purpose. Discourse community is therefore a social group that is involved in discourse.
When you are involved in a discourse community, you need to understand what language they use, how they use language, what knowledge they generally have in the community, and what they are motivating and interested in the community. Understanding the discourse community goes beyond your audience and purpose – it means you have to understand what words to use, how to form these words into units (sentences, paragraphs, etc.) and what information is already provided by community members.
After you understand the concept of a discourse community and begin applying your writing, you will immediately see the effectiveness of your writing. Then you can start making informed decisions about every aspect of writing about the chosen word, grammar, and sentence / paragraph design to the tone and level of formalism.
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