Monday, 31 December 2012

The Sentence

Halliday & Matthiessen (2004: 371):
… the clause complex is realised graphologically as a ‘sentence’ … . The sentence is the highest unit of punctuation on the graphological rank scale and has evolved in the writing system to represent the clause complex as the most extensive domain of grammatical structure.

Sunday, 30 December 2012

The Location Of The Clause Complex: Metafunction, Rank & Stratification

Halliday & Matthiessen (2004: 369):
In terms of metafunction, it is organised by the logical mode of the ideational metafunction, contrasting with circumstantial augmentations of the clause (experiential) and cohesive sequences (textual). … In terms of rank, it is located at the highest rank of the grammar — clause rank; and it is thus related to the clause in terms of logical complexing rather than in terms of experiential constituency. … In terms of stratification, the clause complex realises a semantic sequence of projection or expansion; and it is, in turn, realised by a sequence of tones in speech and by a sentence in writing.

Saturday, 29 December 2012

Grammatical Realisations Of Sequences As Scale Of Integration

Halliday & Matthiessen (2004: 369):
These grammatical opportunities for realising a sequence of projection or expansion form a scale defined by two poles: one pole is the simple clause with a circumstantial element and the other is the cohesive sequence of two independent clauses. The clause complex thus covers the region intermediate between these two poles. … closer to the pole of circumstantial augmentation, there are clause combinations where one clause is dependent on a dominant clause, the two thus being of unequal status [hypotaxis]; closer to the pole of cohesive sequences, there are clause combinations where the two clauses are interdependent on one another, the two having equal status [parataxis].

Friday, 28 December 2012

Grammatical Realisations Of Sequences


Halliday & Matthiessen (2004: 369):
A sequence of projection or expansion may be realised by two clauses that are combined structurally to form a clause complex, as in a happened and then b happened or after a happened, b happened.  But there are two alternative forms of realisation.  On the one hand, the sequence may be realised by two clauses that are not combined structurally but are linked cohesively instead: A happened.  Then b happened.  Here the grammar provides a ‘clue’ as to the nature of the semantic link; but it does not integrate the two clauses into a grammatical construction.  On the other hand, the sequence may be realised by a single clause with a phrase (or adverbial group) serving as a circumstantial element within it: after the time of a, b happened.

Thursday, 27 December 2012

Augmentation By Circumstance Vs By Clause Complexing: Semiotic Weight As Motivating Factor

Halliday & Matthiessen (2004: 369):
In the creation of text, we choose between augmenting a clause ‘internally’ by means of a circumstantial element and augmenting it ‘externally’ by means of another clause in a complex. The decision depends on many factors; but the basic consideration has to do with how much textual, interpersonal and experiential semiotic ‘weight’ is to be assigned to the unit.

Wednesday, 26 December 2012

Augmentation: Circumstances Vs Clause Complexing

Halliday & Matthiessen (2004: 368, 369):
… a circumstantial element in a clause contains only a minor process, not a major one; so unlike a clause it cannot construe a figure, it cannot enact a proposition/proposal and it cannot present a message. In contrast, clause complexing always involves assigning clause-hood to an augmentation of expansion or projection: the augmentation has the full potential of a clause, in experiential, interpersonal and textual terms. … while circumstantial elements are part of the ‘configurational’ organisation of the clause, clauses in clause complexes are part of a chain-like or serial structure.

Tuesday, 25 December 2012

Expansion And Projection

Halliday & Matthiessen (2004: 367):
Circumstances augment the configuration of process + participants in the clause in terms of either projection or expansion. These two types of relation correspond, in turn, to different process types: projection corresponds to verbal and mental clauses, and expansion corresponds to relational clauses. Projection and expansion are also manifested as the logico-semantic relations that link clauses together to form clause complexes.

Monday, 24 December 2012

The Semantic Effect Of Clause Complexing

Halliday & Matthiessen (2004: 365):
Semantically, the effect of combining clauses into clause complexes is one of tighter integration in meaning: the sequences that are realised grammatically in a clause complex are construed as being sub-sequences within the total sequence of events that make up a whole episode in a narrative. … But the integrating and choreographing effect achieved by clause complexes is not, of course, restricted to narratives; it is a feature of texts of all kinds.

Sunday, 23 December 2012

Word Classes And Group Functions

Halliday & Matthiessen (2004: 361-2):
… the mapping between classes at group/phrase rank and functions at clause rank is fairly complex: a group/phrase of a given class can typically serve a number of different clause functions (the exception being the verbal group). When we move down one step along the rank scale to consider the relation between word classes and group/phrase functions, we find there is a stronger tendency towards a one-to-one relationship: a word of a particular class tends to serve only one group/phrase function. The major exception is the class of adverb; but this is partly a matter of delicacy: certain adverbs function only as Head, whereas others function only as Modifier or Sub-Modifier.

Saturday, 22 December 2012

Why Prepositional Phrases Are Not Groups But A Kind Of Minor Clause

Halliday & Matthiessen (2004: 361):
But note that prepositional phrases are phrases not groups; they have no logical structure as Head and Modifier, and cannot be reduced to a single element. In this respect, they are clause-like rather than group-like; hence when we interpret the preposition as ‘minor Predicator’ and ‘minor Process’ we are interpreting the prepositional phrase as a kind of ‘minor clause’ — which is what it is.

Friday, 21 December 2012

Prepositional Phrase: Experiential Structure

Halliday & Matthiessen (2004: 361):
Likewise on the experiential dimension the preposition functions as a minor Process. The nominal group corresponds in function to a Range. But the constituency is the same whether we represent the prepositional phrase experientially or interpersonally.

Thursday, 20 December 2012

Prepositional Phrases Vs Non-Finite Clauses [Diagnostics]


Halliday & Matthiessen (2004: 360):
There is in fact an area of overlap between prepositional phrases and non-finite clauses; some instances can be interpreted as either, and some non-finite verb forms can be classified as prepositions, for example regarding, concerning, including.  In principle, a non-finite clause implies a potential Subject, whereas a prepositional phrase does not; but the prevalence of so-called ‘hanging participles’ shows that this is not always taken very seriously … .  More significant is the fact that non-finite clauses are clause; that is, they can be expanded to include other elements of clause structure, whereas prepositional phrases cannot.

Wednesday, 19 December 2012

Why Many Prepositional Complements Have The Potential To Become Subject


Halliday & Matthiessen (2004: 360):
… prepositional Complements increasingly tend to have the same potential for becoming Subject, as in this floor shouldn’t be walked on for a few days.  No doubt one reason for this tendency has been the lexical unity of phrasal verbs; because look up to is a single lexical item, with a one-word near-synonym admire, it is natural to parallel people have always looked up to her with she’s always been looked up to.

Tuesday, 18 December 2012

Prepositional Phrase: Interpersonal Structure

Halliday & Matthiessen (2004: 360):
A prepositional phrase consists of a preposition plus a nominal group … . We have explained a preposition as a minor verb. On the interpersonal dimension if functions as a minor Predicator having a nominal group as its Complement; …

Monday, 17 December 2012

Prepositional Phrase: Functions


Halliday & Matthiessen (2004: 359, 361):
The prepositional phrase serves as Adjunct in the modal structure of the clause.  Like the adverbial group, it can serve as circumstantial Adjunct or, less commonly, as interpersonal Adjunct; and like the conjunction group, it can serve as conjunctive Adjunct.  In addition, it can be rank-shifted to serve as Postmodifier in a nominal group or adverbial group. …

The exception is prepositional phrases with of, which normally only occur as Postmodifier; the reason is that they are not typical prepositional phrases, because in most of its contexts of use of is functioning not as a minor Process/Predicator but rather as a structure marker in the nominal group (cf to as a structure marker in the verbal group).  Hence of phrases occur as clause elements only in two cases: (1) as circumstance of Matter, for example Of George Washington it is said that he never told a lie, (2) as one of a cluster of circumstances expressing a sense of ‘source’, all ultimately derived from abstract locative ‘from’: died/was cured of cancer, accused/convicted/acquitted of murder and so on.

Sunday, 16 December 2012

Complex Prepositions Vs Prepositional Phrases [Diagnostics]


Halliday & Matthiessen (2004: 359):
Complex prepositions such as in front (of), for the sake (of), have evolved from prepositional phrases, with front, sake as ‘Complement’.  Many expressions are indeterminate between the two … however, there is a difference; those that have become prepositions typically occur without a Deictic preceding the noun (in front of not in the front of), and the noun occurs in the singular only (in front of not in fronts of).

Saturday, 15 December 2012

Preposition Group Vs Prepositional Phrase


Halliday & Matthiessen (2004: 359):
It is important to make a distinction between a preposition group, such as right behind or immediately in front of, which is a Modifier-Head structure expanded from and functionally equivalent to a preposition, and a prepositional phrase, which is not an expansion of anything but a clause-like structure in which the Process/Predicator function is performed by a preposition and not by a verb.

Friday, 14 December 2012

Preposition Group

Halliday & Matthiessen (2004: 359):
Prepositions are not a sub-class of adverbials; functionally they are related to verbs.  But they form groups by modification, in the same way as conjunctions; … Again, there are more complex forms such as in front of, for the sake of which can be left unanalysed.  These are also subject to modification, as in just for the sake of, immediately in front of.

Thursday, 13 December 2012

Conjunction Group


Halliday & Matthiessen (2004: 358-9):
Within the 'primary' word class of adverbials, there is another class besides adverbs, namely conjunctions. […] they form three subclasses, namely linker, binder and continuativeConjunctions also form word groups by modification, for example even if, just as, not until, if only.  These can be represented in the same way, as b^a structures (or a^b in the case of if only).  Note, however, that many conjunctive expressions have evolved from more complex structures, eg as soon as, in case, by the time, nevertheless, in so far as.  These can be treated as single elements without further analysis.  They are themselves, of course, subject to modification, eg just in case, almost as soon as.

Wednesday, 12 December 2012

Adverbial Group: Postmodification

Halliday & Matthiessen (2004: 357, 358):
Postmodification is of one type only, namely comparison. As in the nominal group, Postmodifiers are rank-shifted, or embedded; they may be (a) embedded clauses, or (b) embedded prepositional phrases. …
This is the only instance of embedding other than in a nominal group. All other embedding in English is a form of nominalisation, where a group, phrase or clause comes to function as part of, or in place of (ie as the whole of), a nominal group.

Tuesday, 11 December 2012

Adverbial Group: Premodification


Halliday & Matthiessen (2004: 356):
Premodifiers are grammatical items like not and rather and so; there is no lexical premodification in the adverbial group. […]  The items serving as Premodifiers are adverbs belonging to one of three types — polarity (not), comparison (more, less; as, so) and intensification. […] Those of intensification indicate higher or lower intensity; they are either general intensifiers that are interpersonally neutral (very, much, quite, really, completely, totally, utterly; rather, fairly, pretty,; almost, nearly), including the interrogative adverb how, or specific ones that derive from some interpersonally significant scale (amazingly, astonishingly, awfully, desperately, eminently, extraordinarily, horribly, incredibly, perfectly, terribly, terrifically, unbelievably, wonderfully).

Monday, 10 December 2012

Adverbial Group: Function & Logical Structure

Halliday & Matthiessen (2004: 354, 355):
The adverbial group serves as Adjunct in the modal structure of the clause — either circumstantial Adjunct or modal Adjunct (mood or comment). …
The adverbial group has an adverb as Head, which may or may not be accompanied by modifying elements. Adverbial groups serving as circumstantial Adjunct have an adverb denoting a circumstance as Head — for example, a circumstance of time … or of quality … .
Adverbial groups serving as modal Adjunct have an adverb denoting an assessment as Head — for example, an assessment of time … or of intensity … .

Sunday, 9 December 2012

Diagnostic For Phrasal Verbs

Halliday & Matthiessen (2004: 353):
There will often be doubt about whether these complex lexical items can be interpreted grammatically as a single Process or not. In such cases it is important to consider the transitivity of the clause as a whole, to see whether it appears to be structured as process plus participant or process plus circumstance. Thematic variation often shows a preference one way or the other.

Saturday, 8 December 2012

Textual Motivation For Phrasal Verbs

Halliday & Matthiessen (2004: 353):
… to leave the focus unmarked — that is, at the end … a phrasal verb splits the Process into two parts, one functioning as Predicator and the other as Adjunct, with the Adjunct coming in its normal place at the end. … This also explains … [why] if the Goal is a pronoun it almost always occurs within the phrasal verb. … a pronoun is hardly ever newsworthy, since it refers to something that has gone before, so if the Goal is a pronoun it is virually certain that the process will be under focus. (But not quite; the pronoun may be contrastive, and so it can come finally …)

Friday, 7 December 2012

Phrasal Verbs Realise A Single Process

Halliday & Matthiessen (2004: 352):
Experientially, a phrasal verb is a single Process, rather than Process plus circumstantial element. This can be seen from their assignment to process types … [and] is reflected in thematic variation.

Thursday, 6 December 2012

Phrasal Verb: Expansion Of The Event?

Halliday & Matthiessen (2004: 351n):
A major point of difference between the verbal group and the nominal group is that the Event (unlike the Thing) is not the point of departure for the recursive modifying relationship. Hence it does not figure as an element in the notation. It could be argued that a phrasal verb represents an expansion of the Event … But we have not explored this line of approach here.

Wednesday, 5 December 2012

Phrasal Verbs: Types

Halliday & Matthiessen (2004: 351): 
Phrasal verbs are lexical verbs which consist of more than just the verb word itself. They are of two kinds, plus a third which is a combination of the other two:
(i) verb + adverb…
(ii) verb + preposition…
(iii) verb + adverb + preposition…

Tuesday, 4 December 2012

Contrast & Tense


Halliday & Matthiessen (2004: 351):
The distinction between ‘contrastive in tense’ and ‘contrastive in polarity’ is realised only if at least one secondary tense is chosen; it is however regarded as systemic in all instances, with ambiguity arising where there is no secondary tense.

Monday, 3 December 2012

The Realisation Of Mood: Finiteness, Aspect & Tense


Halliday & Matthiessen (2004: 351):
There is no system of mood in the verbal group.  If a clause is ‘free: indicative’ or ‘bound: finite’, the verbal group is ‘finite’.  If a clause is either ‘free: imperative’ or ‘bound: non-finite’ the verbal group is ‘non-finite’.  The verbal group of an imperative clause is ‘perfective’ in aspect and ‘no secondary’ or ‘present’ in (secondary) tense; negative variants have the special realisation don’t.

Sunday, 2 December 2012

Verbal Group Systems By Metafunction


Halliday & Matthiessen (2004: 349):
(i) Textual: voice, contrast and ellipsis;
(ii) Interpersonal: polarity, finiteness and modality;
(iii) Experiential: aspect and event type;
(iv) Logical: secondary tense.

Saturday, 1 December 2012

Event Type


Halliday & Matthiessen (2004: 348):
… the system network of the verbal group is a network of systems representing contrasts that are purely grammatical in nature.  The only system that extends in delicacy towards distinctions that are realised lexically is the system of event type — the verbal group analogue of the thing type system in the nominal group.  This system is concerned with distinctions among verbs relating to their temporal properties (thus complementing the clausal system of process type, which is concerned with distinctions among processes relating to configurations of process plus participants).