Macquarie University
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Cooperative principle and cohesion in Chinese social media texts: the case of Weibo discussion on women's role

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posted on 2022-03-28, 19:23 authored by Beili Liu
As a growing number of people engaged in online interactions available for public access, conversations take place in social media have drawn the attention of researchers. This study aims to provide an integrated linguistic account on the continuance of social media conversation, focusing on Sina Weibo in particular. Collecting data from message exchanges between two Weibo users discussing Women’s role in contemporary China, this research takes Grice’s Cooperative Principle and its four maxims, a macro level pragmatic framework, and cohesion, a lexical level linguistic property as key analytical instruments. Under the proposed theoretical framework, five main topics and three ways of non-observance of the maxim in the conversation are identified. According to the functions of the identified topics,they are classified as pre-determined topic and conversational topic. The roles that cohesion,topic and non-observance of the maxims play in keeping the conversation going are investigated. The findings suggest that the topic networks that form various semantic connections and the non-observance of the maxims contribute to the continuance of the conversation. Moreover, cohesive relations among lexical items provide significant guidelines to identify the topics and interpret the non-observance of the maxims.


Table of Contents

1. Introduction -- 2. Literature review -- 3. Methodology -- 4. Data analysis -- 5. Discussion -- 6. Conclusion -- References -- Appendices.


Theoretical thesis. Bibliography: pages 70-72

Awarding Institution

Macquarie University

Degree Type

Thesis MRes


MRes, Macquarie University, Faculty of Arts, Department of International Studies: Languages and Cultures

Department, Centre or School

Department of International Studies, Languages and Cultures

Year of Award


Principal Supervisor

Lan Zhang


Copyright Beili Liu 2018. Copyright disclaimer:






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