Analyzing the Rhetorical, Typographical and Paralinguistic Features of Electronic Mails in the Workplace

Mohammad Awad AlAfnan


This study investigated the rhetorical, typographical and paralinguistic features used in workplace emails. It revealed that the email exchanges included both spoken and written language features. The use of these features depended on two main factors that are the degree of involvement between the communicators, on the one hand, and the frequency of exchanging emails regarding a single issue on the other. This study also revealed that the communicative purpose of the email has prompted the type of features used in the emails. The emails that included tasks which were previously carried out using oral methods of communication in the workplace (i.e., face-to-face conversations, telephone calls) included several oral communication practices and typographical errors, whereas the emails that included tasks which were traditionally carried out using written method of communication in the workplace (i.e., letters, memorandums, faxes) mainly included written language features and were written appropriately.  



Email communication; Workplace communication; Rhetorical structures; Typographical features; Paralinguistic strategies

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