International Council for Education, Research and Training

Deictic Analysis Of Cohesive Markers In Religious Discourse

Ogbuehi, Patricia Nneka

Department of English and Literary Studies, Faculty of Arts, Management and Social Sciences, Admiralty University of Nigeria, Ibusa- Ogwuashi-Uku Expressway, Delta State


This study investigates the deployment of deixis as cohesive markers in religious text drawing insight from theories of deixis and cohesion. The data for the study were generated from a religious sermon preached by Dr Daniel Kolawole Olukoya of Mountain of Fire and Miracles Ministries (MFM) during Manna Water programme held on Wednesday 22nd of September, 2021. With the use of quantitative and qualitative research methods, the study identifies the type of deixis used in the sermon, and their deployment as cohesive markers in the text. The findings reveal five different types of deixis that appeared as cohesive markers which include person deixis, spatial deixis, temporal deixis, discourse deixis and demonstrative deixis. The person deixis was used to designate the participants in the discourse, spatial deixis helps to focus the attention of listeners to the different locations mentioned in the sermon, temporal deixis was employed to make reference to different time periods during the sermon, discourse deixis appeared to linking linguistic elements and ideas in the text; while the demonstratives identify notional elements mentioned in the sermon. As cohesive devices, the person deixis, spatial deixis, temporal deixis and demonstratives function as references and substitution, while discourse deixis functions both as references, substitute and conjunctions to link linguistic elements and ideas in the text. The study concludes that the deictic elements used in the religious sermon function as an integral part of text creation to enhance cohesion in the text.

Keywords: Discourse, cohesion, deixis, conversation, sermon

Impact statement

This study investigates the deployment of deixis as cohesive markers in religious text. Deixis as linguistic communication pointers in a text allows readers to identify main elements of communicative act in a bid to decode textual meaning of a passage. They act as cohesive markers to create texture and enhance coherence in a text.   The study of deixis in written text helps a language learner to have a clearer understanding of how text is formed, how meaning is encoded in text formation and how understanding of text is enhanced. 

This study therefore is significant in helping second/foreign language learners and speakers of English language to understand how to create text using deixis as cohesive markers in there written composition. This study will as well give insight and equip language instructors with special tools on how to help their students to comprehend the decoding and encoding of meaning in their reading comprehension.

About author

My name is Patricia Nneka Ogbuehi (Nee Okafor) PhD. I was born in Ihioma of Orlu Local Government Area of Imo State and I am presently married in Akpulu, Ideato Local Government Area of Imo State. My secondary schooling was in Girls’ Secondary School Ihioma, Orlu  and I hold B.A. (Ed) English from the University of Lagos, in Lagos State Nigeria. I hold M.A English and PhD English, all from Olabisi Onabanjo University, Ago Iwoye, Ogun State, Nigeria. I am presently a lecturer in the Department of English and Literary Studies in the Faculty of Arts, Management and Social Studies of Admiralty University of Nigeria, Ibusa, Asaba Delta State, Nigeria. I am a linguist majoring in Discourse Analysis, Pragmatics, Stylistics, Communication Studies, Applied Linguistics and Sociolinguistics.


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