Faculty: Arts
Department: English Language & Literature


Ugochukwu .E.N;


This dissertation explores the transitivity analysis of four short stories in Love Strokes and Other Stories (1998) by Nwachukwu Agbada, as a method of clause analysis in the ideational metafunction of language. It aims to create awareness on the functional aspect of language structures in a prose work. It shows connection between linguistic and literature by adopting Halliday’s transitivity theory. This dissertation aims to illustrate how a reader can capture the subjective and elusive mind of the Nwachukwu-Agbada, using a stylistic approach to unravel his linguistic choices. The transitivity analysis was carried out by applying the three steps developed by Burton [1982:203] namely: isolating the processes, and determining which participant [who or what] is doing in each process; determining what sorts of processes they are engaged in which process; and verifying who or what is affected or seems to be affected by each of these processes. The findings show that the material process has the highest percentage (52.53%); followed by mental processes (22.22%); relational processes (9.09%); behavioural processes (8.08%); verbal processes (7.07%) and existential processes (1.01%). The major theme that surrounds the four stories is love. Other minor themes are; infidelity, cultural practice, and agony. This dissertation finds out that themes are realized from the expressions of some clauses in the narrator utterances, the characters’ actions, the characters’ utterances and the characters’ thoughts in the short stories. The experiential meanings are identified from those selected clauses. From the findings, it is deduced that these stories are concerned with actions and events. The transitivity analysis of Nwachukwu-Agbada’s short stories shows how the actions are performed through the use of material processes. We get a clearer idea from the verbal processes that describe the actions as well as revealing the situation and conditions. Furthermore this impact is strengthened by the relational processes. The physical actions are highlighted through these processes which give an outer and inner views of the world portrayed in the stories. This ensures the success of Nwachukwu-Agbada’s signature as a prolific writer, who uses humour to captivate his readers. In this way, the reader indulges in the mystery of imagination in order to explore the art of the writer revealed through his writing. The researcher is of the opinion that more researches on transitivity could be carried out in this area.