Volume 6, Issue 4
  • ISSN 1053-6981
  • E-ISSN: 2405-9374
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AbstractThis study presents empirical evidence o f Japanese preschool children's (a) narrative discourse competence and narrative structure and (b) rhetorical/expressive flexibility, compared to adults. With data on oral personal narratives told by Japanese preschoolers and adults, and with verse/stanza analysis (Gee, 1985; Hymes, 1981) and high point analysis based on the Labovian approach (Labov, 1972; Peterson & McCabe, 1983), it was discovered that children's and adults' narratives are similar in terms o f structure in that they both tend to have three verses per stanza, and that children and adults tend to tell about multiple experiences. By contrast, there are some clear differences in terms o f content and delivery. Whereas children tend to tell their stories in a sequential style, adults emphasize nonsequential information. Specifically, compared to children's narratives, adults' narratives place considerably more weight on feelings and emotions. The findings of this study strongly suggest that oral personal narratives told by Japanese preschoolers do not represent the final phase o f development. Rather, they still have a long way to go. (Narrative Development; Narrative Structure)


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  • Article Type: Research Article
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