While speech and writing are often viewed as discrete modes, it is important for us to note that there is a continuum between speech and writing.
While speech is in general more interactive than writing, various kinds of spoken and written English display various degrees of interactivity.
For instance, various linguistic markers of interactive discourse, such as first and second person pronouns, contractions, and private verbs such as think and feel, occurred very frequently in telephone and face-to-face conversations but less frequently in spontaneous speeches, interviews, and broadcasts.
In addition, some kinds of writing, such as academic prose and official documents, exhibited few markers of interactive discourse, but the other kinds of written texts, particularly personal letters, ranked higher on the scale of interactivity than many of the spoken texts.
In other words, how language is structured depends less on whether it is spoken or written but more on how it is being used.
For example, a personal letter, even though it is written, will contain linguistic features marking interactivity because the writer of a letter wishes to interact with the receiver of the letter.
On the other hand, in an interview, the goal is not to interact necessarily but to get information from the person being interviewed.
Therefore, though interviews are spoken, they have fewer markers of interactivity and contain more features typically associated with written texts.
OK, to sum up, we have been dealing with the modes of language in today's lecture.
The two most frequently used modes are speech and writing.
As two different modes of language, speech and writing have their own characteristics.
Speech is a preferred mode in many social contacts where interactivity is needed.
Of course, when a formal stable record is preferred, writing should be an appropriate mode.
Finally, I have also emphasized that there is a continuum between speech and writing.
In the following lecture, we will concentrate on the linguistic structures of language.