, Volume 22, Issue 2, pp 273–290

Variation in the Use of Pronouns as a Function of the Topic of Argumentation in Young Writers Aged 11 Years


DOI: 10.1007/s10503-007-9068-5

Cite this article as:
Auriac, E. Argumentation (2008) 22: 273. doi:10.1007/s10503-007-9068-5


In our view, the ability to impose moral values which may be, to some extent, either shared or conflictual, influences the strategy adopted when writing argumentative texts. Our hypothesis is that the greater the socio-moral distance between the writers’ representations (the writers in this case being children) and those of the recipients (here the parents), the more likely it is that writing will be successful. Three topics derived from a preliminary experiment and corresponding to significant differences in opinion between children and parents were tested in a population of 11-year-old pupils. The pupils had to write a letter designed to convince their parents about one of these topics. We analyzed the texts in order to identify the different configurations in the frequencies of use of the pronouns (frequencies of Je (I), Tu (You), Il (He), On (One/We)) and adverbs. These frequencies differed depending on the topic that was being written about (the moral context that is mobilized).


Writing strategy Primary school Enunciation Socio-moral context 

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Laboratoire P.A.E.D.I., Processus d’Action des Enseignants: Déterminants et Impacts, JE2432Université Blaise Pascal, Clermont FerrandChamalièresFrance
  2. 2.Laboratoire de Psychologie Cognitive et Clinique, EA4165Université de Nancy 2Nancy CedexFrance
  3. 3.St Maurice es AllierFrance

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