The Effect of Gender in The Use of The Modal Adjuncts in The Writings of Advanced Foreign Learners of Persian Language Based on Functional Grammar

Document Type : Research Paper


1 Assistant Professor of Linguistics, Faculty of Literature and Foreign Languages, Semnan University, Semnan, Iran.

2 M. A. in Teaching Persian Language to non-Persian Learners, Semnan University, Semnan, Iran.


For many years, researchers have attempted to discover the complex interrelationship between language and gender. This research investigated modal adjuncts usage in the writings of female and male learners of Persian as a second language. This research has been done based on Halliday's systemic functional grammar approach, because, this theoretical framework provides a systemic method for text analysis. Regarding the impact of gender on the writings of Persian language speakers, valuable studies have been done so far, but no research has investigated the impact of gender on the modal adjuncts usage in the writings of learners of Persian as a second language. In fact, this research has been done to investigate the impact of gender on different modal adjuncts usage in the writings of learners of Persian as a second language based on Halliday's systemic functional grammar approach. The method of this research is descriptive-analytic method.  The population of this study included advanced learners of Persian as a second language which studied at Persian Language Center of Ferdowsi University. This field study used random sampling for participant selection. data were collected through tests and writing assignments.  The sample and the corpus of this research was the writings of 248 advanced female and male learners of Persian as a second language of the center for teaching Persian language in Ferdowsi university of Mashhad. First, the writings were classified based on gender (124 men and 124 women). Then, the modal adjuncts in the texts  were identified based on the segmentation of Halliday; after that, the distribution of all modal adjuncts, was determined and shown by charts and compared. The chi - square statistical test was used to study the significance of differences between men and women. The results indicated that the modality adjuncts were the most frequent modal adjuncts in the writings of the participants. The results showed differences across males and females. Women used modal adjuncts that showed uncertainty in their writings more than men and men have used modal adjuncts that showed certainty in their writings more than women. Lakoff (1975) says that women are systematically taught to speak with specific language features, and those language features are associated with a lack of power. Also, the results indicated that women have used comment adjuncts more than men. James and Drakich (1993, pp. 302–3) said women are expected to talk, and do talk, about personal feelings and other socioemotional matters relevant to interpersonal relationships to a greater extent than men.


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Volume 12, Issue 1
July 2021
Pages 121-143
  • Receive Date: 29 November 2020
  • Revise Date: 06 April 2021
  • Accept Date: 24 May 2021
  • First Publish Date: 24 May 2021