Friday, 15 November 2019

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Examples Of External Comparison [1]


Martin & Rose (2007: 124):
The basic options for comparison are similarity versus difference. Perhaps the most common kind of comparison is to contrast two clauses as different, using but:
This is not a frivolous question, but a very serious issue.
Here Tutu contrasts two abstract things, a question and an issue. There is a lexical contrast between their qualities - frivolous versus very serious - and this contrast is made explicit with but. The particular type of difference here is opposition: frivolous and serious realise opposite experiential meanings. But is used in paratactic relations, and opposition can also be realised in hypotactic relations with whereas, while:
Whereas this is a simple question, it is a very serious issue.

Blogger Comments:

[1] To be clear, in SFL Theory, the logical meaning of comparison is 'N is like M', and it is marked by items such as and + similarly; (and) so, thus as, as if, like, the way like (Halliday & Matthiessen 2014: 477).  Comparison is a subtype of enhancement.

[2] To be clear, in SFL theory, the logical meaning 'not X but Y' is termed replacive variation, and it is marked by such items as but not; not ... but, instead of, rather than (Halliday & Matthiessen 2014: 471). Replacive variation is a subtype of extension.

Given that Martin & Rose distinguish 'opposite' (i.e. 'adversative' in SFL) from 'replacing' ('instead of'), their analysis of this relation as 'opposite' rather than 'replacing' is even inconsistent with the distinctions of their own model.

[3] To be clear, the relation here obtains between nominal groups, not clauses, which is consistent with the authors' discussion of the elements that are contrasted.

this
is
not a frivolous question but a very serious issue
Carrier
Process: attributive
Attribute
Subject
Finite
Predicator
Complement
Mood
Residue

not
a frivolous question
but
a very serious issue

1

+ 2


[4] To be clear, in SFL theory, the logical meaning 'X and conversely Y' is termed adversative addition, and it is marked by such items as but, (and) yet while, whereas (Halliday & Matthiessen 2014: 471). Adversative addition is a subtype of extension.

That is, Martin & Rose here misunderstand adversative addition (extension), on the grammatical stratum, as a subtype of comparison (enhancement) and rebrand their misunderstanding as 'opposite', on the discourse semantic stratum.

Tuesday, 12 November 2019

The System Of External Addition

Martin & Rose (2007: 124):
In sum, options for external addition include adding, subtracting and alternation, set out in Figure 4.1.
 

Blogger Comments:

To be clear, the problems with the authors' rebranding of Halliday's grammatical system of extension as a discourse semantic system of addition can be made explicit by comparing it with the systemic categories it misunderstands; Halliday & Matthiessen (2014: 471):
It can be seen that Figure 4.1 only models 3 of the 6 categories of extension:
  1. additive: positive (rebranded as 'add'),
  2. additive: negative (misunderstood as 'subtract'), and
  3. alternation.
The authors' misunderstanding of negative addition as 'subtract' creates the further logical inconsistency of 'subtract' being construed as a subtype of 'additive'.

It will be seen in a later post that Martin & Rose misconstrue the 3 omitted categories of extension:
  1. addition: adversative,
  2. variation: replacive, and
  3. variation: subtractive
as subtypes of comparison, which in SFL theory, is a subtype of enhancement, not extension.

A further theoretical disadvantage of misunderstanding these expansion relations and rebranding them as discourse semantics is that it creates an incongruent relation between grammar and discourse semantics even in the absence of grammatical metaphor.

Sunday, 10 November 2019

Examples Of External Addition


Martin & Rose (2007: 122-4):
We have seen that and can function to add clauses together in a paratactic sequence, one after another:
... white people became dissatisfied with the best
and still wanted better
and got it
 
Four, maybe five policemen viciously knocked me down,
and they put me back on the chair
and handcuffed my hands through the chair
… Other conjunctions that realise alternation include if not-then, alternatively:
dependent
If they don't want restorative justice,
then they could choose retribution.
 
cohesive
A witness may be terminally ill.
Alternatively she might be disabled.

Blogger Comments:

To be clear, these are all grammatical relations, rebranded as discourse semantic relations, with no argument supporting the claim that these relations obtain at a higher level of symbolic abstraction.

[1] To be clear, the relation here is not addition (extension), but time (enhancement), since it relates two clauses in a nexus in terms of temporal sequence.  This error demonstrates the folly of taking form as the point of departure for ascribing function.  As Halliday & Matthiessen (2014: 487) point out, the conjunction and can mark not only additive extension ('and also'), but also temporal enhancement ('and then') and causal enhancement ('and so').

[2] To be clear, the relation here is not alternative addition (extension), but condition (enhancement).  If the relation were one of alternation, the clause complex would be agnate to Either they don't want restorative justice or they could choose retribution.  A genuine example of alternation would be If it's not circular then it's elliptical (cf. Either it's circular or it's elliptical).  This again shows the folly of taking form as the point of departure for ascribing function.

[3] To be clear, in SFL theory, the function of the expansion relation here is textual, not logical (as well as being grammatical, not discourse semantic).  The relation here is non-structural, whereas logical relations obtain structurally between rank units in complexes.

Friday, 8 November 2019

The Discourse Semantic System Of External Conjunction

Martin & Rose (2007: 122):
External conjunction is concerned with logically organising a field as sequences of activities. For each general type of external conjunction - addition, comparison, time, consequence - there are two or more sub-types, summarised in Table 4.2.
 
Blogger Comments:

[1] To be clear, in SFL Theory, external conjunction is concerned with relating text segments in their experiential guise.  Halliday & Matthiessen (2014: 611):
As we have seen, elaborating, extending and enhancing conjunctions mark relations between semantic domains, i.e. between text segments. These text segments are simultaneously ideational and interpersonal; they construe experience as meaning, e.g. an episode in a narrative or a recount, and they enact roles and relations, e.g. an exchange in a conversation or consultation, or an argument in an exposition. Relations link text segments either in their ideational guise or in their interpersonal guise: they relate either chunks of experience or chunks of interaction. … Relations between representations of segments of experience are called external relations, and conjunctions marking such relations are called external conjunctions. … Relations linking text segments in their interpersonal guise are called internal relations – internal to the text as a speech event, and conjunctions marking such relations are called internal conjunctions.
[2] To be clear, in SFL Theory, external conjunction is a non-structural grammatical system of the textual metafunction that deploys the resource of expansion to create cohesive relations between portions of text.  Martin & Rose combine the textual system of conjunction and the logical system of clause complexing and rebrand it as discourse semantics instead of grammar, without providing evidence as to why it constitutes a higher level of symbolic abstraction.

[3] To be clear, in SFL Theory, field is the ideational dimension of context, the culture construed as a semiotic system.  Since sequences of activities are here construed as discourse semantic rather than context (contrā Martin 1992), field and activity sequences lie on different levels of symbolic abstraction and, as such, different levels of semiotic organisation.

[4] To be clear, the omissions and misunderstandings in the authors' model of external conjunction can be made evident by comparing it with the SFL model below (Halliday & Matthiessen 2014: 612):
For example, Martin & Rose:
  • do not organise their system in terms of the three most general subtypes of expansion: elaboration, extension and enhancement, which are fractal types manifested across multiple domains (e.g. circumstances, relational processes, etc.);
  • omit all 9 subtypes of elaborating relations;
  • omit 4 of the 6 subtypes of extension;
  • omit the enhancing relation of matter;
  • misconstrue the adversative extending relation ('but') as a subtype of comparison (enhancing);
  • misconstrue the manner subtype means as a relation of consequence (cause-condition).
Moreover, the logico-semantic relation of projection is entirely absent from the discourse semantic model of logical relations.

Tuesday, 5 November 2019

Misconstruing Interpersonal And Textual Adjuncts As "Logical" Continuatives

Martin & Rose (2007: 121-2):
Finally there is one other type of linker aside from conjunctions. These are known as continuity items or continuatives. Continuatives differ from conjunctions in two ways. More often than not, conjunctions occur at the beginning of a clause in English (although cohesive conjunctions can be positioned more flexibly). But continuatives primarily occur within a clause, rather than at the start. And their options for logical relations are far more restricted. Two that we have come across so far are even and also:
We even spoke about marriage.
It is also not true that the granting of amnesty encourages impunity.
To put even at the start of this clause completely changes its meaning — rather than spoke about marriage being unexpected, it is we that becomes unexpected. Also, placing also at the start of a clause is a marked option, as it more typically occurs within the clause.

Blogger Comments:

[1] To be clear, in SFL theory, the grammatical items linker and continuative are subclasses of conjunction, which is a subclass of adverbial. Halliday & Matthiessen (2014: 75):
[2] To be clear, in SFL theory, it is conjunctive Adjuncts that have this positional flexibility, and these are realised by adverbials, including adverbs and conjunctions.  Their function is textual on the lexicogrammatical stratum, not logical  on the discourse semantic stratum.

[3] To be clear, in SFL theory, continuatives are inherently thematic and so occur at the start of the clause.  Halliday & Matthiessen (2014: 107):
A continuative is one of a small set of words that signal a move in the discourse: a response, in dialogue, or a new move to the next point if the same speaker is continuing. The usual continuatives are yes no well oh now.
[4] To be clear, in SFL theory, as demonstrated by the usual examples yes no well oh now, continuatives do not express logical relations.  Their function is textual on the lexicogrammatical stratum, not logical  on the discourse semantic stratum.

[5] To be clear, neither even nor also are continuatives.  In the first cited clause, even is an adverb serving as a mood Adjunct of intensity. Its function, therefore, is interpersonal on the lexicogrammatical stratum, not logical  on the discourse semantic stratum.

In the second cited example, also is a conjunction serving as a conjunctive Adjunct of addition. Its function, therefore, is textual on the lexicogrammatical stratum, not logical on the discourse semantic stratum.

[6] To be clear, the locational choice of a conjunctive Adjunct in a clause serves a textual function on the lexicogrammatical stratum, not  a logical function on the discourse semantic stratum.

Sunday, 3 November 2019

Misconstruing Textual Cohesion As A Type Of Logical Dependency


Martin & Rose (2007: 121):
Third, two sentences can be logically related by a conjunction such as Further or Thus:
It is also not true that the granting of amnesty encourages impunity...
Further, retributive justice…is not the only form of justice. 
This is a far more personal approach, which sees the offence as something that has happened to people and whose consequence is a rupture in relationships.
Thus we would claim that justice, restorative justice, is being served when efforts are being made to work for healing, for forgiveness and for reconciliation.
We will refer to these kinds of dependency relations between sentences as cohesive (following Halliday and Hasan 1976).


Blogger Comments:

[1] To be clear, in SFL theory, cohesive conjunction is a non-structural grammatical system of the textual metafunction.

[2] To be clear, here Martin & Rose confuse interdependency, which is structural and logical, with cohesion, which is non-structural and textual.

[3] This is misleading. To be clear, Martin & Rose are not "following" Halliday & Hasan (1976); they are taking the grammatical model of cohesive conjunction in Halliday & Hasan (1976) and simply rebranding (their misunderstanding of) it as their own model of discourse semantics (following Martin 1992).

Friday, 1 November 2019

Rebranding Grammar As Discourse Semantics And Confusing The Logical And Textual Metafunctions

Martin & Rose (2007: 121-2):
Before discussing each type of conjunction in more detail, we need to look briefly at three grammatical contexts in which they are realised, as different conjunctions are used in each context. The first type links a sequence of independent clauses:
I went off to school in the morning
and I was sitting in the classroom
and there was only one room where all the children were assembled
and there was a knock at the door
… another conjunction used in paratactic relations is then:
I was told to shut up, sit in a chair
then I was questioned
These two clauses cannot be reversed without reversing the logical relation between them. We cannot say, for example, *then I was questioned, I was told to shut up. But the conjunction when does allow such a reversal:
when I answered the questions
I was told that I was lying 
I was told that I was lying
when I answered the questions
The reason is that these two clauses are not equal in status. One is independent, and the other beginning with when is dependent on it. The when clause functions as the context in which the other takes place. In this respect its function is similar to a Circumstance of time such as after the questions I was told that I was lying, which can come at the start or end the clause.


Blogger Comments:

[1] To be clear, the system being demonstrated here is Halliday's grammatical system of clause complexing, and the grammatical context is which it is realised is the syntagmatic axis.  The realisation relation does not obtain stratally between discourse semantics and lexicogrammar. Martin & Rose, following Martin (1992), are merely rebranding Halliday's (1985) grammatical system as Martin's discourse semantic system.

[2] To be clear, conjunctions are lexicogrammatical phenomena.

[3] To be clear, it is not the logical relation that is reversed, but the sequence of clauses.  Clauses are lexicogrammatical phenomena.

[4] To be clear, this relates to the textual function of β-clauses in clause complexes, which varies according sequence: progressive or regressive. Halliday & Matthiessen (2014: 551):
The contrast between progressive and regressive sequence … is quite typical of procedural texts: temporal clauses delimiting the performance of actions tend to be rhematic …. In general, thematic β-clauses serve to set up a local context in the discourse for the α-clause: they re-orient the development (as in the staging of a narrative), often distilling some aspect of what has gone before to provide the point of departure for the dominant clause, thus creating a link to the previous discourse (cf. Longacre, 1985; Thompson, 1984; Ford & Thompson, 1986).
[5] To be clear, the 'similarity' relates to their being agnate manifestations of the expansion category temporal enhancement. Halliday & Matthiessen (2014: 666-7):
We have met expansion in a number of different grammatical domains. The most detailed account was … where we found that the three subtypes of expansion (elaboration, extension and enhancement) combine with tactic relations to link one clause to another in the formation of clause complexes. … On the one hand, expansion is manifested in the augmentation of the clause by circumstances: these circumstantial augmentations cover all three types of expansion, with enhancement being the most highly developed one.
[6] To be clear, this relates to the textual function of circumstances in clauses as thematic or rhematic; see [4].

Tuesday, 29 October 2019

Confusing Different Strata, Different Metafunctions, And Different Grammatical Elements


Martin & Rose (2007: 119-20):
Like Tutu, Helena uses explicit conjunctions to signal the beginning of new phases in her story. But whereas Tutu uses them to organise his argument, Helena uses them to sequence the phases in time.
 
Helena uses the time conjunctions Then and After to connect each phase to the immediately preceding events, but the scope of finally is the story as a whole. During all the preceding events Helena didn’t understand the struggle, but now she finally does. 
The other resources Helena uses here to sequence the story in time are Circumstances - As an eighteen-year-old, one day, More than a year ago, After my unsuccessful marriage, After about three years with the special forces, Today. These Circumstances set the events in an exact time period, while time conjunctions simply indicate the sequence.

Blogger Comments:

[1] To be clear, this confuses different levels of description.  Although this is presented as discourse semantics, conjunctions are grammatical, the stratum below discourse semantics, and phases of story are, on the authors' model, genre, the stratum two levels above discourse semantics.

[2] To be clear, the two instances of after in the extract are not conjunctions and do not function conjunctively, either logically within a clause complex, or textually as a cohesive relation.  Both are prepositions and function, experientially, as the minor Process — and interpersonally as the minor Predicator — of a prepositional phrase serving as a circumstance of temporal Location.

[3] To be clear, this is (high school) reading comprehension, not (academic) linguistic analysis.

[4] To be clear, circumstances do not function logically or sequence a story in time.  Circumstances function experientially within a clause.  However, each of circumstances cited is also highlighted in the text as a marked Theme, and it is this textual logogenetic pattern of Theme selection (Halliday & Matthiessen 2014: 659ff) that works with the textual grammatical system of conjunctive cohesion — misunderstood by Martin & Rose as logical discourse semantics — in creating text.

Sunday, 27 October 2019

The Four Types Of Conjunction And Expectancy

Martin & Rose (2007: 119):
In sum the explicit conjunctions here realise our four types of conjunction: addition, comparison, time and consequence, and Helena uses them deftly to manage expectancy in the context of the events. They are set out in Table 4.1.
* Note that then is not typically counterexpectant, but functions counterexpectantly in this context.

Blogger Comments:

[1] As previously demonstrated, the authors' argument that a speaker's (textual or logical) deployment of expansion features manages the experiential expectations of readers does not survive close scrutiny.

[2] To be clear, in SFL theory, the first three examples in Table 4.1 are instances of cohesive conjunction, and function textually and non-structurally, whereas the final two examples are instances of clause complexing, and function logically and structurally.

[a] Of the three instances of cohesive conjunction:
  • and all my girlfriends envied me is an instance of extension: positive addition, and
  • then one day he said… is an instance of enhancement: temporal: following.
Whereas the first and third of these are merely rebrandings, the second is a misunderstanding of the logical relation deployed. This is demonstrated by the fact that the clause can be seen as agnate with other instances of addition, such as he was also, rather than instances of comparison, such as he was likewise.

[b] Of the two instances of clause complexing:
  • all because I married… is an instance of enhancement: causal-conditional: cause: reason ('because P, so result Q'), and
  • even if he was an Englishman is an instance of enhancement: causal-conditional: condition: concessive ('if P then contrary to expectation Q').
That is, Martin & Rose rebrand cause-condition as consequence, and the distinction between (a type of) cause and (a type of) condition as a distinction between expectant and counterexpectant.


The theoretical disadvantage of rebranding grammatical expansion relations as different discourse semantic relations is that it creates a mismatch between strata in the absence of grammatical metaphor, thereby undermining the distinction between congruent and metaphorical grammatical realisations of semantic systems.

Friday, 25 October 2019

The Interplay Of Explicit And Implicit Conjunction To Manage Expectancy [3]

Martin & Rose (2007: 118-9):
This interplay of explicit and implicit conjunction to manage expectancy is well illustrated in the first Incident of Helena’s story:
Then one day he said he was going on a 'trip'.
'We won't see each other again…maybe never ever again.'
I was torn to pieces.

So 
was he.
An extremely short marriage to someone else failed
all because I married to forget.
… Then the next step from romance to tragedy is explicitly marked by Then, signalling that a new phase is beginning which is likely to be counterexpectant, and so probably bad news. After her reaction, So was he makes explicit that her lover’s feelings about leaving were the same as hers, and that this was to be expected. And the failure of her subsequent marriage was also completely predictable, made explicit by the causal conjunction all because.

Blogger Comments:

[1] To be clear, the conjunction then merely signals the conjunctive relation of 'temporal: following'. Whether what follows constitutes a new "phase" depends on the experiential meanings of the preceding and following portions of text.

[2] To be clear, there are no grounds for counterexpectancy on the part of a reader merely on the basis of the conjunction then.  Consider instances of the type: I sat down; then I stood up.

[3] To be clear, there are no grounds for assuming that "counterexpectant" information is bad news.  Consider instances of the type: Then, on the day I was retrenched, I won the lottery.

[4] To be clear, here the conjunction so merely signals the conjunctive relation of 'positive addition'.  The clause so was he gives the reader no evidence as to whether this was to be expected. In fact, its inclusion by the speaker might be taken to resolve any doubt on the matter.

[5] To be clear, the conjunction group all because provides no grounds for a reader to judge the preceding clause as predictable; it merely signals the clause complexing relation of 'cause: reason'.  Consider instances of the type: So I ended up in hospital all because I walked to work instead of driving.


In all of the above, Martin & Rose are misattributing their own hindsight judgements of reader expectancy to the unfolding text of the speaker.  Moreover, in doing so, they
  • confuse the experiential meaning of clauses with the logico-semantic relation of expansion, 
  • confuse the latter's textual manifestation (cohesive conjunction) with its logical manifestation (clause complexing), and
  • rebrand these grammatical systems as discourse semantic systems.

Tuesday, 22 October 2019

The Interplay Of Explicit And Implicit Conjunction To Manage Expectancy [2]

Martin & Rose (2007: 118-9):
This interplay of explicit and implicit conjunction to manage expectancy is well illustrated in the first Incident of Helena’s story:
… A bubbly, vivacious man who beamed out wild energy.
Sharply intelligent.
Even if he was an Englishman,
he was popular with all the 'Boer' Afrikaners.
And all my girlfriends envied me.
… And in the description phase that follows, she uses even if in a similar way [to even], to tell us that an Englishman being liked by the ‘Boer’ Afrikaners is counterexpectant (if they were expected to like him she might have said because he was an Englishman). In contrast, her girlfriends’ reaction is explicitly added by starting a sentence with And, letting us know that their envy is entirely to be expected.

Blogger Comments:

[1] To be clear, the claim here is that the conjunction even if functions similarly to the adverb even (see previous post).  In SFL theory, the functional difference is significant.  The function of conjunction even if is to relate two clauses in a clause nexus by the enhancement relation of concessive condition, whose meaning is 'if P then contrary to expectation Q' (Halliday & Matthiessen 2014: 478).  So, in the above extract, the meaning is 'if he was an Englishman, then contrary to expectation, he was popular with all the 'Boer' Afrikaners'.  In terms of metafunction, the meaning being realised is logical, and the grammatical domain is the clause complex.

In contrast, the function of the adverb even is that of a mood Adjunct of intensity: counterexpectancy: exceeding, whose meaning is 'went so far as' (Halliday & Matthiessen 2014: 188).  So the meaning of we even spoke about marriage is 'we went so far as to speak about marriage'.  In terms of metafunction, the meaning being realised is interpersonal, not logical, and the grammatical domain is the clause, not the clause complex.

These important distinctions are lost on Martin & Rose, in their rebranding of Halliday's lexicogrammar as Martin's discourse semantics.

[2] To be clear, the explicit use of the conjunction and does not "let us know that their envy is entirely to be expected".  This can be demonstrated by omitting the conjunction, leaving the textually cohesive relation implicit:
Even if he was an Englishman,
he was popular with all the 'Boer' Afrikaners.
All my girlfriends envied me.
Here Martin & Rose are merely making bare assertions, unsupported by any linguistic evidence or argumentation. 

Sunday, 20 October 2019

The Interplay Of Explicit And Implicit Conjunction To Manage Expectancy [1]

Martin & Rose (2007: 118-9):
This interplay of explicit and implicit conjunction to manage expectancy is well illustrated in the first Incident of Helena’s story:
As an eighteen-year-old, I met a young man in his twenties.
He was working in a top security structure,
it was the beginning of a beautiful relationship.
We 
even spoke about marriage. …
The first phase is sequenced in time, from meeting to relationship to speaking about marriage, but this sequence is expected by the field, as we discussed in Chapter 3 (section 3.5), so there is no need to make each step explicit with conjunctions. On the other hand, Helena uses even to make it explicit that speaking about marriage was more than we would normally expect at the beginning of a relationship.

Blogger Comments:

[1] To be clear, here Martin & Rose confuse conjunctive relations in the text of the speaker with the expectations of various types of others.

[2] To be clear, the extract is not sequenced in time. Only the last clause simplex can be interpreted as related by temporal succession. This can be demonstrated by inserting the conjunctive Adjunct (afterwards) that marks temporal succession:
As an eighteen-year-old, I met a young man in his twenties.
Afterwards he was working in a top security structure,
(and) afterwards it was the beginning of a beautiful relationship.
Afterwards we even spoke about marriage.
 [3] Leaving aside the metaphorical notion of a theoretical category having expectations, and the fact that this extract is not simply a temporal sequence, the field of the text is a South African woman talking of her own past. Given how few South African women, of the total population, form romantic relationships with top security officers, it is clearly unreasonable for any reader to expect this particular sequence, as opposed to any other, just on the basis of recognising the situational field.

[4] Clearly, there is a need to make each step explicit with conjunctions, at least for two readers, Martin & Rose, since they have demonstrably misunderstood the conjunctive relations in this portion of text.

[5] To be clear, here Martin & Rose mistake the interpersonal Adjunct even (counterexpectancy: exceeding) for a conjunctive Adjunct marking (for them) a logical relation.

[6] To be clear, here Martin & Rose misunderstand the meaning of the text. The use of the mood Adjunct of intensity even signals 'went as far as'; that is, the speaker's meaning is 'we went as far as speaking of marriage'.

Friday, 18 October 2019

Misrepresenting Field And Confusing Reader Expectation With Speaker Meaning


Martin & Rose (2007: 118):
Indeed sequence in time is so consistently expected by story genres that there is often no need to use any conjunctions:
On arriving back at Sandton Police Station, at what they call the Security Branch
the whole situation changed
I was screamed at, verbally abused
I was slapped around
I was punched
I was told to shut up
sit in a chair
then I was questioned
when I answered the questions
I was told that I was lying
I was smacked again...
Conjunction between the first five activities in this sequence is left implicit — they just happen one after another — until the field shifts from physical and verbal abuse to interrogation, and this shift in field is signalled with the explicit conjunction then. We can now expect a different set of activities — concerned with questioning rather than beating. However the interrogators’ response to their victim’s answers was unexpected, at least to the victim, and this is again signalled with an explicit conjunction when.

Blogger Comments:

[1] To be clear, on the authors' previous analysis, there is no way to determine whether the conjunctive relation here is sequence in time or addition, since the omitted conjunction could be either then or and.

[2] To be clear, here Martin & Rose again confuse what the author of the text says with what various others expect.  In this case, the expecting process is mediated (metaphorically) by story genres, and by readers (including discourse analysts).  In the final instance, Martin & Rose imagine that the author's projection of himself in the text mediates a process of not expecting.

[3] To be clear, here Martin & Rose confuse ideational semantics (language) with ideational context (field). In terms of SFL theory, the field of the text — 'what is going on' — is a witness giving evidence at the Truth And Reconciliation Commission.  It is not the contextual field that shifts, but the ideational meanings being instantiated in the logogenesis of the text.

[4] To be clear, these are hindsight claims by Martin & Rose, not meanings made by the author in the text.  This can be demonstrated by comparing the use of these conjunctions in other texts, or by removing the text that follows each of the conjunctions.  For example, the wording
I was punched
I was told to shut up
sit in a chair
then …
does not lead the reader to expect the instantiation of the Process was questioned any more than a wide range of other potential processes.  Similarly, the wording
I was punched
I was told to shut up
sit in a chair
then I was questioned
when …
does not signal any interrogator responses as unexpected by the victim, not least because the author does not express the view that the interrogator responses were unexpected by him. 

Tuesday, 15 October 2019

Misanalysing Conjunctive Relations By Giving Priority To The View 'From Below'

Martin & Rose (2007: 117-8):
Conjunction helps to manage what we expect to happen in a text. In an exposition, we expect a series of supporting Arguments, and Tutu confirms our expectations by explicitly adding each one. We also expect conclusions to be drawn from the arguments presented, and again Tutu meets our expectations by explicitly announcing each conclusion with Thus. In Chapter 3 (section 3.5) we saw that the unmarked relation in an activity sequence is simple addition, so that and is the most common conjunction in personal recounts, adding one event to another:
The circumstances of my being taken, as I recollect, were that I went off to school in the morning and I was sitting in the classroom and there was only one room where all the children were assembled and there was a knock at the door, which the schoolmaster answered. After a conversation he had with somebody at the door, he came to get me. He took me by the hand and took me to the door. I was physically grabbed by a male person at the door, I was taken to a motor bike and held by the officer and driven to the airstrip and flown off the Island.

Blogger Comments:

[1] To be clear, SFL theory distinguishes between conjunction (non-structural textual grammar) and clause complexing (structural logical grammar).  Here Martin & Rose exemplify conjunction with instances of clause complexing and rebrand the confusion as logical discourse semantics.

[2] To be clear, here Martin & Rose mistake the mental projections of readers ("what we expect") for the verbal projections of writers (texts).  That is, they confuse the meanings made by readers with the meanings realised in the wordings of writers.

[3] To be clear, here Martin & Rose give priority to the view 'from below' (the realisation of meaning as and) rather than taking the SFL perspective of giving priority to the view 'from' above (the meaning being realised by and.  The main disadvantage of this approach is that a single wording can realise distinct meanings.  For example, the conjunction and can realise additive extension, temporal enhancement or causal enhancement; Halliday & Matthiessen (2014: 487):

In the sample text, 3-6 of the 7 instances of and can be interpreted as realising temporal enhancement rather than additive extension — that is, in the authors' rebranded terms: successive time rather than addition.

Sunday, 13 October 2019

Misunderstanding Halliday & Hasan's Distinction Between External And Internal Conjunction

Martin & Rose (2007: 117):
Tutu uses addition (also, further) to add Arguments to support his Thesis. And he uses consequence (thus) to draw conclusions from each Argument. These items are not linking events in a field of experience beyond the text; rather they are used to link logical steps that are internal to the text itself. We refer to this system for logically organising discourse as internal conjunction. And the system for linking events in an activity sequence is known as external conjunction (after Halliday and Hasan 1976).

Blogger Comments:

[1] To be clear, in terms of SFL theory, the wording 'field of experience' confuses the ideational dimension of culture (field) with the non-semiotic domain (experience) that is construed by the processes of consciousness as ideational meaning.  This is an important epistemological distinction for a theory that takes meaning to be immanent (a property of semiotic systems only).

[2] This is misleading, because Martin & Rose are not following Halliday & Hasan (1976), since they demonstrably misunderstand the distinction between external and internal conjunction.

Firstly, both types of conjunctive relation are internal to the text.  The external/internal distinction means external/internal to the communication situation. Halliday & Hasan (1976: 240):
Secondly, both external and internal conjunctive relations are used to create text ("organise discourse").  Halliday & Hasan (1976: 241):
Thirdly, the distinction between external and internal conjunctive relations is made on the basis of the metafunctional distinction between experiential and interpersonal, not experiential and textual. Halliday & Hasan (1976: 240):

[3] To be clear, in SFL theory, conjunction is a system of the textual metafunction on the stratum of lexicogrammar, which Martin (1992) has misunderstood and rebranded as his system of the logical metafunction on his stratum of discourse semantics.

Friday, 11 October 2019

Some Of The Problems With The Four General Types Of Logical Relations

Martin & Rose (2007: 116-7):
Both systems use the same four general types of logical relations: adding units together, comparing them as similar or different, sequencing them in time, or relating them causally as cause and effect, or evidence and conclusion. These four general types are known as addition, comparison, time and consequence. The units they relate range from simple clausesto more complex sentences, to text phases, to stages of a genre.

Blogger Comments:

[1] To be clear, the original source of the authors' theorising is Halliday & Hasan (1976: 226-73), where the four categories of conjunction are
  • additive
  • adversative
  • causal
  • temporal.
However, Halliday (1985) reworked the system of conjunction in terms of the three most general types of expansion:
  • elaboration
  • extension
  • enhancement.

Importantly, these three general categories are manifested throughout the grammar.  Halliday & Matthiessen (2014: 669):
Let us now present a systematic and comprehensive summary of the different grammatical environments in which elaboration, extension and enhancement are manifested: see Table 10-3. As the table shows, the environments of manifestation can be differentiated in terms of (i) metafunction – textual (CONJUNCTION), logical (INTERDEPENDENCY; MODIFICATION) and experiential (CIRCUMSTANTIATION; PROCESS TYPE: relational), and (ii) rank – clause and group/phrase. (The table could, in fact, be extended downwards along the rank scale to take account of patterns below the rank of group/phrase within the logical metafunction: word and morpheme complexes also embody interdependency relations that combine with expansion.) 
Moreover, it is this multiple manifestation that makes possible grammatical metaphor and the expansion of the semantic system, as Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 294-5) explain:
The whole metaphorical elaboration [of the semantic system] is made possible by a fractal pattern that runs through the whole system. We have suggested that the metaphorical elaboration is a token–value relation; but in order for it to be a token–value relation within the semantic system, it has to be natural in the sense that the token and the value domains have to be similar enough to allow for the token to stand for the value. The principle behind this similarity is the fractal pattern of projection/expansion … 
That is, while grammatical metaphor constitutes a move from one “phenomenal domain” to another … this move is made possible because fractal types engender continuity across these domains: the metaphorical move from one phenomenal domain to another takes place within the one and the same transphenomenal domain.
It can be seen that these later insights and the explanatory advantages they provide are lost in the authors' rebranding of the original Halliday & Hasan (1976) model.  It can also be seen that the major category of elaboration is entirely absent from the authors' model, since the model only includes one type of extension (addition) and three types of enhancement (comparison, time and consequence).

[2] To be clear, in SFL theory, these correspond to cause: reason and cause: result. The relation between evidence and conclusion is not necessarily causal.

[3] Importantly, in confusing Halliday's cohesive conjunction with Halliday's clause complexing, the authors have omitted the major logico-semantic relation of projection from "their" model.  This is because their source, cohesive conjunction, is the textual deployment of expansion relations only.  This omission means that clause complexes involving mental or verbal projection are not accounted for at the level of discourse semantics.  This is a major weakness in the model, not least because it provides neither congruent nor metaphorical relations between the strata of discourse semantics and lexicogrammar for this major type of logico-semantic relation.

[4] To be clear, Martin & Rose model genre as context instead of language, but nevertheless claim that these relations at the level of language (discourse semantics) obtain between units of context (generic stages).  This demonstrates most clearly that the authors do not understand the SFL hierarchy of stratification or the notion of symbolic abstraction by which it is organised.

It can be noted at this point that Martin's model of genre arises, in part, from his misunderstanding of Hasan's Generic Structure Potential (Halliday & Hasan 1989 [1985]: 64), which models potential semantic structures, varying according to genre, as modelling potential genre structures.