Promotion of Self in an Other-Oriented Academic Sub-Genre: The Case of Self-Mention in Acknowledgments


1 Associate Professor in TEFL, Department of English, Islamic Azad University, Tabriz Branch, Tabriz, Iran

2 PhD Candidate, Department of English, Tabriz Branch, Islamic Azad University, Tabriz, Iran


Although sometimes considered to act only as a means of recognizing debts, acknowledgments give the opportunity for writers to display a self-conscious and reflective representation of self. Following this assumption and to reveal some of the ways this is achieved, a corpus of 80 textbook acknowledgments in the field of Linguistics and Applied Linguistics were analyzed in order to show what “self” does in an other-oriented academic sub-genre. The findings of the study revealed that acknowledgments is composed of a sequence of moves, through which the writer must mainly and primarily acknowledge the others who have a share in the process of the development of an academic enterprise. However, within this manifest presence of others, the readers also find implicit and explicit traces of self which carry the writers’ desires for promotion. This study clearly indicates that self-promotion is an inherent and integral quality of all academic discourses and even an “other” oriented academic genre can be seen to carry a self-promotional flavour.