A Study on Modals Used in Text Your Say of The Jakarta Post

Elisabeth Rosalia Widyanti, Made Frida Yulia


Communication happens not only in spoken form, but also in written form.Newspaper, as one form of written communication, provides ways for people to show theiropinion, intention, and thought. In the way people communicate by using language,modalsenable people to show something which is not simply positive or negative and each modal hassome functions to show peoples thought, intentions, or opinion.This study dealt with how modals were used by the commentators in Text Your Sayof The Jakarta Post. To solve the problem, the theories from Azar and Hagen (2009) andLeech and Svartvik (1994) were employed.The findings showed that there were 225 modalsfound in Text Your Say of The Jakarta Post issued in November 2012. They consisted ofmay, might, should, had better, be supposed to, must, have to, will, can, could, be able to, andwould. They were used by the commentators to show some functions. The functions were toshow 50% or less certainty, 90% certainty, 95% certainty, 100% certainty, ability/possibility,past ability, impossibility, necessity, strong necessity, advisability, suggestion, prohibition,expectation, unfulfilled wish/hypothesis, willingness, polite for want, and fulfilled futurecondition in the past.


modals, comments, Text Your Say

Full Text:



Azar, B. S. (1993). Understanding and using English grammar. Jakarta Barat: Binarupa Aksara.

Azar, B. S.,& Hagen, S. A. (2009). Understanding and using English grammar (4th ed.). New York: Pearson Education.

Celce-Murcia, M.,& Larsen-Freeman, D. (1999). The grammar book: An ESL/EFL teachers Course (2nd ed.). New York: Heinle & Heinle Publishers.

Fowler, R. (1986). Linguistic criticism. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Halliday, M. A. K. (2004). An introduction to functional grammar(3rd ed.). London: Hodder Education.

Jackson, H. (1990). Grammar and meaning. New York: Longman Inc.

Leech, G., & Svartvik, J. (1994). A communicative grammar of English (2nd ed.). New York: Longman Publishing.

Lehmann, W. P. (1983). Language: An introduction. New York: Random House, Inc.

McManis, C., Stollenwerk, D., & Zheng-Sheng, Z. (1987). Language files. Ohio: Advocate Publishing Group.

Palmer, F. R. (1981). Semantics (2nd ed.). Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Wales, H. G. (1989). Language style. New York: Richard D. Irwin Inc.

DOI: https://doi.org/10.24071/llt.v16i1.263

Article Metrics

Abstract view : 1967 times
PDF view: 751 times


  • There are currently no refbacks.

Copyright (c) 2016 Elisabeth Rosalia Widyanti, Made Frida Yulia

Indexed and abstracted in:



LLT Journal Sinta 2 Certificate (S2 = Level 2)

We would like to inform you that LLT Journal: A Journal on Language and Language Teaching has been nationally accredited Sinta 2 by the Ministry of Education, Culture, Research and Technology of the Republic of Indonesia based on the decree  No. Surat Keterangan 158/E/KPT/2021. Validity for 5 years: Vol 23 No 1, 2020 till Vol 27 No 2, 2024



This work is licensed under CC BY-SA.

Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License


Free counters!

 LLT Journal: A Journal on Language and Language Teaching, DOI: https://doi.org/10.24071/llt, e-ISSN 2579-9533 and p-ISSN 1410-7201is published twice a year, namely in April and October by the English Language Education Study Programme of Teacher Training and Education Faculty of Sanata Dharma University, Yogyakarta, Indonesia.