02 November 2007

This is the moment

Now that my dissertation has passed, I can publish it on the Internet and not worry about whether or not anyone reads it or likes it. But please, let me know how it makes you feel. How did the marker feel about it?
The conclusions reached, and the reconceptualization suggested in the conclusion demonstrates a superior understanding of the issues at play in the field and offers a sound groundwork for a way forward in light of the limitations of current models of discourse.

The grammar analysis is also top-rate, and the summary offers a welcome overview of the analysis. The author’s conclusion, on page 32, that “Inconsistency seems to be the most consistent element in the blog entries analyzed in this study.” Is as compelling as it is unique—rather than insisting that a pattern appear in the data, the author has recognized that unclear results have the potential to be as informative or more informative than clear-cut definitions or distinctions extracted from the data.

The last chapter is as compelling as it is original, particularly the alternative discourse cline on page 36 and the discussion surrounding it, and the observation on page 37 that if texts “…can be understood as closely related to each other without clear, defined distinctions, then discourse can [be] discovered as it is, rather than what it should be” is top-rate.

Taken as a whole this is a well organized and researched dissertation that represents a superior piece of scholarship at the MA level.