Classification of functional styles, belles-lettres style


A functional style of language is a system of interrelated language means which serves a definite aim in communication.

In the English literary standard Galperin distinguishes the following major functional styles (FS): belles-lettres; publicistic literature; newspaper; scientific prose; official documents.

The belles-lettres FS has the following substyles: style of poetry; of emotive prose; of drama. The publicistic FS comprises the following substyles: style of essays; of oratory; of feature articles in newspapers and journals.

The newspaper FS falls into: style of brief news items and communiqu? s; of newspaper headlines; of notices and advertisements.

The scientific prose FS also has three divisions: style of humanitarian sciences; of ‘exact’ sciences; of military documents.

The official documents FS can be divided into four varieties: style of diplomatic documents; of business documents; of legal documents; of military documents.

The belles-lettres style rests on certain indispensable linguistic features which are:

1.Genuine, not trite, imagery, achieved by purely linguistic devices.

2.The use of words in contextual and very often in more than one dictionary meaning, or at least greatly influenced by the lexical environment.

3.A vocabulary which will reflect to a greater or lesser degree the author’s personal evaluation of things or phenomena.

4.A peculiar individual selection of vocabulary and syntax, a kind of lexical and syntactical idiosyncrasy.

The introduction of the typical features of colloquial language to a full degree (in plays) or lesser one (in emotive prose) or a slight degree, if any (in poems).

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