THE REALIZATION OF THEME AND THEMATIC PROGRESSION IN NON-NATIVE WRITERS‟ RESEARCH ARTICLE ABSTRACTS
Theme and thematic Progression play an important role in writing since they can make the writing cohesive and coherent. Cohesion and coherence are essential textual components to create comprehensiveness of the texts. Using twenty abstracts of research articles written in English by Indonesian and Chinese scholars as non-native writers, this study examines the realization of theme and thematic progression and their distributions. This study uses descriptive qualitative research design since it attempts to describe and analyze textual data. The unit analyses of this study are clauses of the article abstracts written by the Indonesian and Chinese writers. The theory of theme system developed by Halliday (1994) and the theory of thematic progression proposed by Eggins (2004) are used as the framework to analyze the data. The findings reveal that there are both similarities and differences in the distribution of theme and thematic progression in the research article abstracts written by Indonesian and Chinese writers. In terms of similarities, in both Indonesian and Chinese article abstracts are found textual theme and topical theme, but none of the interpersonal theme is found. The Topical theme is mostly used in both Indonesian and Chinese article abstracts. On the other hand, the difference appears in terms of the thematic progression distribution. The Indonesian writers seem more likely to use constant pattern, while Chinese writers tend to use zig-zag patterns. Besides, the multiple pattern is only found in the Chinese article abstracts, and is not found at all in the Indonesian article abstracts.