Reader Versus Writer Responsibility Revisited: A Polish-Russian Contrastive Approach

  • Łukasz SalskiEmail author
  • Olga Dolgikh
Part of the Multilingual Education book series (MULT, volume 29)


Since Hinds (Writing across languages: analysis of L2 text. Addison-Wesley, Reading, 1987) proposed his distinction between reader- and writer-responsible languages, there has been little research into what exactly makes a language, or text, either reader- or writer-responsible. Likewise, little has been done to estimate to what extent a specific language represents either side of the dichotomy (Salski, PASE studies in linguistics. Wydawnictwo Uniwersytetu Łódzkiego, Łódź, 2007). At the same time, apart from concern about sensitizing students to discrepancies between how texts are composed and perceived in different languages (Golebiowski, Transcultures 1, 2005), a growing need to teach clarity of expression in L1 writing can be observed in some contexts.

This chapter is an attempt to take Hinds’ dichotomy a step further, looking into text features that constitute components of reader and writer responsibility. The authors propose a tool for investigating the phenomenon and report on a pilot action research project in which they put it into practice. Implications of such an investigation pertain not only to L2, but also to L1 academic writing instruction, where student writers need to learn to respond to the expectations of the discourse community they are about to enter.


L2 writing L1 writing Reader versus writer responsibility Academic literacy Discourse community Intercultural communication 


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© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of English Language and Applied LinguisticsInstitute of English Studies, University of ŁódźŁódźPoland
  2. 2.Moscow Institute of Physics and TechnologyDolgoprudnyRussia

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