Both texts portray a job interview. However, whereas text A is a transcript between an interviewer and interviewee, text B is a novel extract from 1913. Thus, although it also features a job interview, it has been created for a specific audience in mind and uses a number of literary features in order to achieve dramatic purposes. Moreover, the interview, although also transactional, is very different from the interview in the transcript as the novel is from the 20th century where things were very different. This can be seen through the attitude of the employer, and the fact that the interviewee is only 14 years old and is with his mother. Whereas the purpose of text A is purely transactional and is only between the two speakers present, text B, although featuring a somewhat transactional interaction, has the purpose of entertaining an audience of readers who are likely to have been middle class.
The transactional purpose of text A is very apparent from the question-answer adjacency pairs. The transcript features a series of interrogatives asked by M, followed by declaratives by A. This is apparent from the very beginning, with M asking “what made you apply for this job?” He uses the personal pronoun “you” to directly address the speaker A. The way A replies is quite contrasting to how M speaks as A uses many non-fluency features, suggesting that she is nervous in the interview situation, but also conveying how M is likely to have already planned questions. This is emphasised by the fact that M is a lot less fluent when asked a question which they did not plan for. Similarly, the dialogue in text B begins with a series of adjacency pairs, with Mr Jordan using the exclamative “sit down!” He is clearly a lot less respectful than the interviewer in text A, perhaps reflecting the differing time periods. Mr Jordan’s aggression adds to dramatic effect, however, entertaining the reader and building tension.
The modes of address used by the narrator in text B reflect status, with “Mr Jordan” and “Mrs Morel” contrasting with “Paul”. This reflects the attitudes to children at the time the novel was written.
Moreover, as text B is a literary text, it contains significantly fewer non-fluency features than text A. However, they are used to show Paul’s fear and nervousness in his interview. He makes the unintentional repetition of “it’s the” to show his struggle to get his words out. The fillers “er” also create this effect. The interviewee in text A uses a vast number of non-fluency features. However, whereas text A tries to create the sense of an interview, text B is a genuine interview and we see a lot more hesitation from speaker A which conveys her nerves. The fillers “erm” and “er” also give her time to think when answering questions, as does her unintentional repetition of “an an” which also shows how she speaks. In contrast, M appears to be a lot calmer, using barely any non-fluency features. Instead, M uses unvoiced pauses to think about what they want to say. This also shows that they have a higher status, as they don’t need to use voiced hesitations to hold their turn in the conversation. However, when A unexpectedly asks about the uniform and laughs, M is a lot more non-fluent, using fillers such as “er”. They were obviously not expecting a question such as that. A is quite informal, with her use of “round me own kitchen” and her idiom “I’d go with it”. This is unexpected in an interview, and in a way could be seen to place her in conflict with M.
In text B, it is clear that there is also conflict between Mr Jordan and Paul who challenges him about the meanings of “doigts”. However, before this his non-fluency suggests fear. Mr Johnson is clearly quite irritable, using many imperatives such as “read that”. However, he is more polite with Mrs Morel, which can be seen through his exclamative “good-morning!” Nonetheless there is some passive aggression in the way he says this. Mrs Morel’s declarative “he is a bad writer” uses the third-person pronoun “he” which suggests annoyance with her son. This may also be why Mr Johnson speaks of Paul in this way at the end of the extract, asking the leading question “He would live in Bestwood?” In text B, the third person narrator seems to tell the story from Paul’s perspective as the description of Mr Johnson shows disliking towards him, and influences the reader’s opinion of him. The compound pre-modification “red-faced, white-whiskered” conveys that Mr Johnson is an angry old man. However, later in the extract, Paul is described as a “pale, stupid, defiant boy” which appears to be from Mr Johnson’s perspective. This contrast shows the conflicting views and tension of the novel. Mr Johnson is also continually described through the use of the speech-tag “snapped”. The emphatic repetition of this verb implies an animalistic quality and suggests Mr Johnson's aggression. As text B is a transcript, it uses no literary features as they are not necessary in achieving the transactional purpose. However, A does contain figurative language in the idiomatic hyperbole “I did everything really” to make a good impression to M, where the first-person pronoun emphasises how capable she is.
In conclusion, although the context of text A and B are similar in that they both feature a transactional job interview, being reflected through features such as adjacency pairs, back-channel and non-fluency, text B is a literary text. Therefore, it uses literary features in order to entertain the reader and to create impressions of the characters’ attitudes and values, whereas in text B, attitudes and values are communicated in spontaneous speech.