Swales begins by tipping the readers off as to why we need to understand what a discourse community is. He references a lot of texts. He continues into the passage by breaking down the parameters by which a discourse community can be defined. He then goes on to talk about whether or not discourse communities are subsets of speech community. Swales identifies speech community so readers can be sure what they are comparing discourse communities with. He also makes sure to point out that discourse communities should be considered its own concept. He ends the argument with, in my opinion their most distinct difference, being the qualifications to gain membership to the community. His next section goes into further detail on the specific characteristics for being a discourse community. In the last paragraph of the writing, he gives an example of a discourse community.
I found the beginning of the text to be quite confusing, however, this was something we were warned of beforehand. It was confusing because we were entering in the middle of his book and he references a lot of academic texts and debates that I have never read and wouldn’t understand. His writing is also very formal and I found it hard to stay concentrated sometimes. I did enjoy his enthusiasm and passion for this concept though and it was consistent throughout the whole excerpt. I appreciated his detail when talking about how discourse communities differed from speech communities. I thought the most interesting part of his analysis of the two communities was how you gain membership to the community. In my opinion this was the most distinct characteristic difference. It is probably the most recognizable one and easiest to pin point if you were given an example.
Going forward I am not sure how I will incorporate this in my work. I know we have an essay that asks us about a discourse community we are a apart of but I really can’ think of anything. All of his examples except the last one seemed like they were pretty involved and more involved than anything I might be a part of. So I feel as if I wont have anything to write about. I also don’t know how I would incorporate this into my everyday writing. I think it’s something that is important for academics and professional English academics to understand and know but I don’t think it is really important for writing in the everyday life. I don’t believe writing needs to be that deep outside of the academic world. Nonetheless, it was still an interesting excerpt and concept to read about.