An Analysis on Code-Switching in Fortress Besieged from the Perspective of Register Theory

  •  Meihua Wang    


Code-switching is a common yet complicated phenomenon. With the rapid development of cross cultural communication, the contact between language and language varieties become all the more frequent. With the appearance of more and more bilingual and multilingual communities, code-switching becomes a linguistic phenomenon of significant academic concern in the field of linguistics. This paper sets out to analyze code-switching in Ch’ien Chung-shu’s famous work—Fortress Besieged. In this novel, some characters frequently engaged in code-switching in their conversation. However, among differing views on the merits of this language phenomenon, few studied it from the register perspective. In this light, the present study adopts the register theory to analyze code-switching in Fortress Besieged. The core of this study is to make a detailed analysis of the impact of field, tenor and mode upon the occurrence of code-switching in this novel. Through an investigation of code-switching employed in this work, it shows that code-switching in this novel is subject to the influence of the three factors of register, field, tenor and mode. These three variables of register have a restrictive impact on the occurrence of the switched codes based on different situations in Fortress Besieged. Throughout an analysis of code-switching in Fortress Besieged, the study intends to arouse language users’ awareness of this linguistic phenomenon so that they can apply it properly in their communication.

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