Showing or Telling a Story: A Comparative Study of Public Education Texts in Multimodality and Monomodality

  •  Kelu Wang    


Multimodal texts that combine words and images produce meaning in a different way from monomodal texts that rely on words. They differ not only in representing the subject matter, but also constructing relationships between text producers and text receivers. This article uses two multimodal texts and one monomodal written text as samples, which are for the same purpose of public education and on the same subject matter of wildlife protection. Through a comparative analysis of the two sets of sample texts, this article aims to show that different modes of representation produce different effects on text receivers and convey different amount of information. Thus, the multimodal texts and monomodal texts can meet the needs of different readers, who want to know about a subject matter or seek for detailed information on that subject matter. In addition, the different ways of meaning representation requires different modes of reading for readers of multimodal texts and monomodal texts.

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