Exploring Non-Topical Linguistic Materials in Narrative Essays: The Case of Ilocano and Ifugao Writers

Chirbet Cariño Ayunon, Lysel Ildefonso Haloc


Much have been written on exploring and investigating coherent markers of writers coming from different cultures; however, no study has attempted to look into the use of non-topical linguistic materials among students belonging to a different subculture of one particular culture. Anchored on Kachru’s (1999) Contrastive Rhetoric Hypothesis, this paper investigates the use of linguistic materials in the narrative essays of Ilocano writers and Ifugao student writers, two subcultures in Region 2. Results revealed that across the five categories, the Ifugao students had the greater propensity to use non-topical linguistic materials than the Ilocano students, except for illocution markers. As regards discourse connectives, the most common devices employed are the elaborative discourse markers, “and” and “but”. The higher occurrence of modality markers among the narrative essays written by the Ifugaos may also signify tentativeness in expressing their views. Also, the Ilocano students are more reserved in expressing their emotions compared to the Ifugao students as reflected in the minimal use of attitude markers. Moreover, it was found that the least-favored linguistic devices are metalinguistic markers and illocution markers. This poses a significant pedagogical implication on the instruction of non-topical linguistic materials as aid in the production of cohesive and coherent essays. It is suggested that a larger corpus be included in the analytical realm and an examination of non-topical linguistic materials in other genres of writing be conducted. 

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