CHAPTER ONE INTRODUCTION
Ever since the beginning of the 20th century when the first corporate press release was made by Ivy Lee, concerning an accident that the company Pennsylvania Railroad had been involved in, press release has been playing an important role in the profession of public relations. Fraser even crowns it as “the granddaddy of public relations writing vehicle” (Fraser, 2014: 92). In the business world, the success of a company is usually built on a good public reputation, which is mainly realized by way of public relations. Corporate press releases turn out to be a most widely used tool for that purpose. If the public, or more specifically, the stakeholders are kept well infor med of what happens in a company, especially of those good thi ngs, it would be much easier for the m to relate to this com pany and thus conceive a po sitive image of it in a gradual way. However, with the aim to construct a favorable image, companies usually adopt a tone more or less prom otional, typical feature of advertisem ents, to report on their news, which is in conflict with the com mon rule th at news rep orts shall be factual and objective. As a result, corporate press releases com e to a place som ewhere between news reports and advertisem ents, mixed with generic features of both genres. Therefore, generic intertextuality is bound to appear in corporate press releases.
1.1 Definition of Corporate Press Releases
A press release is a form of written communication from an organization to the media about anything that is consid ered to be newsworthy. It can announce a range of new s items, including scheduled events, persona l promotions, awards, new products and services, sales accomplishments, etc.1 Specifically, in this paper, corporate press releases, hereafter referred to as CPRs, are thos e only reporting on positive events published by corporations on their official websites.
1.2 Rationale of the Study
On the one hand, intertextuality has long be en a key factor in discourse analysis. Kamberellis and Scott (2004) propose that one of the basic tasks for discourse analysis is to construct a specific n etwork of intertextual relations. There have been many researches in d iscourse analysis carried out from the perspective of intertextuality. However, most of those researches concentrate on explicit intertextu al relations, such as allusions, references, clichés, proverbs, quotations, etc. (e.g. Ma , 2013; Liu, 2014; Zhao and Che ng, 2015). Those relations can be recognized immediately. In