Volume 22, Issue 2
  • ISSN 0155-0640
  • E-ISSN: 1833-7139
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A number of researchers (Meyer 1975, 1977a, 1977b; Meyer, Brandt & Bluth 1980; Meyer & Freedle 1984; Carrell 1983; Connor 1984) have claimed that Collection is one of the most rudimentary of expository text configurations. They suggest that, unlike expository configurations such as Comparison, Causation and Problem/Solution, it possesses no top-level structure at all. In this paper, I will re-examine the structure of one type of Collection by building on a set of claims by Tadros (1994) which suggest, contra Meyer and others, a clear basic rhetorical make-up for Collection. I will closely examine a type of Collection referred to by Tadros as Enumeration, to argue that it possesses a well-defined constituent structure and set of interconstituent relationships. I will then analyse randomly selected samples from a body of twenty essays by Cantonese-speaking freshmen enrolled in the English department of a Hong Kong university, to support two claims: 1° the majority of these learners have considerable difficulty conforming to the interconstituent constraints on Enumeration; 2° as a group they show evidence of three developmentally differentiable levels of acquisition of the rhetorical structure of Enumeration. In a final section, I will consider the pedagogical implications of these findings.


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  • Article Type: Research Article
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