Recent years have seen a rapid influx of reviews in the field of different aesthetic and consumption domains, which is indicative of the importance assigned by present-day society to what we choose to experience and consume. Given their prevalence, there is a need to find an adequate analytic framework which allows insightful understanding of the discursive construction of such reviews. This paper aims to propose such a framework by combining tools from the Appraisal model with ideas from argumentation theory. The combined methodology is demonstrated using one text from a corpus of wine reviews written by the extraordinarily influential wine critic Robert Parker. The analysis takes into consideration both meanings that are internal to the text and meanings that are text-external, so-called world knowledge. I argue that the technique of reconstruction adopted from argumentation theory helps to highlight and explain how the appraisal works in the text. The findings are generalizable to the extent that the methodology can be used for any type of review text, especially in the domain of present-day luxury consumption, which is not overtly argumentative but which can still be found to have an assessment-basis format that leads its readers towards a certain worldview that they are invited to co-construct and see as rational.
HUMANIORA -- Språk och litteratur -- Jämförande språkvetenskap och lingvistik (hsv//swe)
HUMANITIES -- Languages and Literature -- General Language Studies and Linguistics (hsv//eng)