Sunday, 31 August 2014

Why Quoting Locutions & Reporting Ideas Are The Natural Default Condition

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 111-2):
… although the two variables, locution/idea and quoting/reporting, can combine in either of the two possible alignments, there is a natural default condition, which is that locution goes with quoting and idea goes with reporting. The reason for this is clear: 
where the first-order phenomenon is one of saying (prototypically shared semiosis), the projected figure can be presented as if it was also of the same order: Harriet said + “Shall I feed the cat?” (reversible as “Shall I feed the cat?” + said Harriet). 
Where the first-order phenomenon is one of sensing (unshared semiosis), the projected figure has no counterpart on the first-order plane of experience and cannot be naturally presented as if it had; so, Harriet wondered + whether she should feed the cat
But there is always the possibility of semogenic extension by cross-coupling; so we also find corresponding marked alignments: locution/report Harriet asked + whether she should feed the cat, and idea/quote Harriet wondered + “Shall I feed the cat?” — the latter being again reversible.

Saturday, 30 August 2014

Reporting: Wording Marking Second-Order Reality

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 111):
… in quoting, the form of wording is still that of the first-order realm of experience: “Shall I feed the cat?” — taken by itself, there is nothing about this to show it is a projection. In reporting, on the other hand, the form of wording is clearly marked as being of the second-order: whether she should feed the cat has lost its first-order semantic features — and hence has to be projected by words that specify its particular speech function: asked/wondered not said/thought.

Friday, 29 August 2014

Quoting Vs Reporting And The Creation Of A Second-Order Reality

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 111):
In reporting, the status of the two parts is unequal — the projected figure is dependent on the projecting: hence the projected figure is clearly construed as belonging to a different, second-order plane of reality — a reality that is made up of meaning, as it were. In quoting, on the other hand, the two have equal status as independent figures; the projected figure is thus projected as if it was part of the same first-order reality.

Thursday, 28 August 2014

Semantic Weight: Quoting Vs Reporting

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 111):
… whenever two figures are related in a sequence, they may be either equal or unequal in semantic weight. … The projecting and projected figures may have equal status in the sequence: this relation is that of quoting … . Or they may have unequal status: this relation is that of reporting ….

Wednesday, 27 August 2014

Sensed Ideas Vs Said Locutions

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 110-1):
Let us look more closely at these two modes of projecting, in both of which the projecting figure represents symbolic processing, the processing that brings the other figure into symbolic existence. Either the projection takes the prototypical form of semiosis: it is presented as verbal, shared, an exchange or joint construction of meanings; or it is fashioned into a derived semiotic form, unshared, interiorised, and without any meaning being exchanged. In the first, the projecting figure is one of saying; the projected is referred to as locution. In the second, the projecting figure is one of sensing; the projected is referred to as idea. Ideas are projections which are sensed, locutions are projections which are said.

Tuesday, 26 August 2014

Second-Order Experience: Meaning & Wording

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 108):
We have suggested that the relation of projection sets up one figure on a different plane of reality — we refer to this as the second-order or semiotic level. This second-order level of reality is the content plane of a semiotic system. That is to say, the projected figure is projected in the form of ‘content’. We have seen that the content plane is stratified into two levels — semantics (the level of meanings) and lexicogrammar (the level of wordings). Consequently, we would expect projections to be located at either or both of these levels, and this is indeed what happens: a projected figure is either a meaning or a wording. […] We will refer to these [i.e. meaning and wording] in the context of projection as ideas and locutions.

Monday, 25 August 2014

Non-Human Sayers

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 106-7): 
… typically only humans can project into second-order reality. However, since human consciousness is the locus of semiotic activity, it has the power of interpreting as metaphenomenon that which is manifested by some other, non-conscious symbolic source. Thus while “sensing” (that is semiotic activity that is unmanifested, like thinking) does require a human senser, saying can be ascribed to a non-human as well as to a human sayer …

Sunday, 24 August 2014

The Differentiation Of Two Orders Of Reality Embodied In Sequences

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 106):
This differentiation is embodied in relations of sequence in the following way. Either a sequential relation expands one figure by adding another one to it, the two still remaining on the same phenomenal level; or the sequential relation projects one of the two figures onto the plane of second-order, semiotic phenomena, so that it enters the realm of metaphenomena (meanings or wordings).

Saturday, 23 August 2014

Language & Orders Of Experience

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 106):
Note that the linguistic processes themselves, as apprehended by our senses, are part of the first-order reality; second-order reality is formed of the meanings and wordings that these processes bring into being.

Friday, 22 August 2014

Construing Material Vs Semiotic Orders Of Experience

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 106): 
Throughout the semantic construal of human experience, there is a differentiation between two orders of reality: between the everyday reality of our material existence on the one hand and on the other hand the second-order reality that is brought into existence only by the system of language. This is a contrast between semiotic phenomena, those of meanings and wordings, and the first-order phenomena that constitute our material environment.

Thursday, 21 August 2014

Why Natural Logic & Propositional Logic Differ

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 105):
Both the difference in scope and the difference in ‘definability’ can be explained in functional terms. Sequences have evolved in the interpretation of human experience in general; consequently, they have to be flexible and powerful enough to cope with a large amount of variation, and the implicit ‘definition’ of each relation (i.e., its location in the semantic system along various dimensions) is the evolving distillation of innumerable instances where it is invoked […]. In contrast, the truth-functional connectives of propositional logic have been designed for a restricted purpose — the kind of deductive reasoning western philosophy came to focus on — and their definitions are fixed by reference to values of “true” and “false” (by means of truth tables.

Wednesday, 20 August 2014

Propositional Logic Vs Natural Logic

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 104n, 105n): 
Propositional logic is interpersonally invariable. Unlike natural logic, it is only concerned with statements, or rather — since language is concerned with validity rather than truth — with the philosophical version of what are statements in natural language. […]
Projecting figures of the ‘think’ type — ‘know’, ‘believe’, ‘want’ — have been represented outside standard logic within intensional logic.

Tuesday, 19 August 2014

Evolved Natural Logic Vs Designed Propositional Logic

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 104):
Sequences might be said to constitute the  ‘natural logic’ equivalent of propositional logic — that is, the evolved system for reasoning about relations of cause, conditionality, etc from which propositional logic has been derived by design. […] Since propositional logic is a designed system, its relations are codified and defined (typically in truth-functional terms). In contrast, sequential relations have evolved. A certain type of relation will have a core — the prototypical representatives of that type; but there will also be peripheral representatives and ‘grey areas’ where one type shades into another. There is another important difference between propositional logic and natural logic of sequences. While there is only a very small handful of truth-functional connectives in propositional logic (conjunction, disjunction [exclusive or non-exclusive], implication), there is a very wide range of sequential relations in language — all the more specific varieties of projecting and expanding.

Monday, 18 August 2014

Sequence Models The Logical Relations Between Figures

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 104):
A sequence constitutes a model of how figures can be related. One prominent form of this relationship, which has been foregrounded in various guises in science and logic, is that of cause & effect, whereby experience is given causal interpretation. But that is only one among many such possible relationships, which taken together can be said to constitute the logic of natural language.

Sunday, 17 August 2014

The Effect Of The Special Subcategories Of Participant & Circumstance

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 102):
These special subcategories have the effect of construing other elements as “referable” — that is, of enabling them to retain their semiotic identity for subsequent access and hence as it were authenticating them (e.g. Don’t give me any more of that peanut butter! I can’t stand the stuff.) This applies primarily, though not exclusively, to participants. At the same time, it allows us to recognise not only of the ‘simple’ type but also ‘larger’ elements known as macro- and meta-phenomena. Macro-phenomena are figures downranked to function as ordinary elements; meta-phenomena are figures projected as elements of a second order.

Saturday, 16 August 2014

Subcategories Of The Elements Participant & Circumstance As Viewed From The Grammar

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 99, 102):
The view from the grammar brings into relief a number of relevant factors relating to participants and circumstances. There are certain special subcategories of these, in the grammar, which are distinguished by the fact that they embody features of interpersonal or textual meaning:
(1) interpersonal: questioning 
interrogative: who, what, when, where, how far, how long, how, why 
(2) textual: cohesive
(i) referring, personal: he, she, it, they; demonstrative: this, that, now, then, here, there, thus 
(ii) generalising: lexical items such as person, creature, thing, stuff, affair
These are significant in their own right because they are critical to the construction of discourse: the textual ones provide internal cohesion, while the interpersonal ones construe dialogic speech rôles. They have further significance in that they reveal by reactance the major subclasses within the general classes of participant and circumstance.

Friday, 15 August 2014

The Three Types Of Element Constructed Within The Grammar — Textual Metafunction

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 99):
Relating to the textual metafunction: participants and circumstances can both readily serve as Theme (though there potentials differ); processes only rarely, other than in imperative clauses. Participants and (more restrictedly) circumstances can serve as referables identified by referring expressions, but processes cannot — as with WH- interrogation, they have to be construed as a Range together with the pro-verb do as Process: do it/that.

Thursday, 14 August 2014

The Three Types Of Element Constructed Within The Grammar — Interpersonal Metafunction

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 99):
Relating to the interpersonal metafunction: participants can serve as Subject; circumstances* and processes cannot. Furthermore, participants and circumstances can serve as WH- elements, but processes cannot (if the process is being questioned, a participant element has to be construed as a Range: What … do?).
[*Note that circumstances can serve as Subject in circumstantial relational clauses.]

Wednesday, 13 August 2014

The Three Types Of Element Constructed Within The Grammar — Ideational Metafunction

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 99):
Within the ideational component, they are realised by different classes of units:
  • process ( verbal group,
  • participant ( nominal group,
  • circumstance ( adverbial group; prepositional phrase.
Participants tend to be inherent elements of a figure; circumstances are typically optional.

Tuesday, 12 August 2014

The Four Types Of Figure Constructed Within The Grammar — Textual Metafunction

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 98):
Relating to the textual metafunction: different types of figure are presumed in different ways and have different potential for textual prominence; e.g. only material clauses are substituted by the pro-verb do (to/with).

Monday, 11 August 2014

The Four Types Of Figure Constructed Within The Grammar — Interpersonal Metafunction

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 98):
Relating to the interpersonal metafunction: in any given register there may be typical correspondences between the type of figure and speech function; e.g. in procedural registers, material clauses are typically imperative, relational ones indicative.

Sunday, 10 August 2014

The Four Types Of Figure Constructed Within The Grammar — Ideational Metafunction

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 98):
Within the ideational metafunction, each is realised congruently by one particular transitivity type: doing & happening ( material, sensing ( mental, saying ( verbal, and being & having ( relational.  These have various reactances, such as the number and nature of participants and the unmarked present tense selection.

Saturday, 9 August 2014

The Ideation Base As A Semantic Space

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 97-8):
The semantic categories are themselves construed by means of realisation; they are constructed within the grammar and lexis of a language. If we model the ideation base as a semantic space, we are foregrounding one aspect of the construction of meaning in language, namely the way in which lexicogrammar construes our experience of the world in the guise of multidimensional matrices or grids. This is an important feature of language as a semiotic system, an inevitable consequence of the principle of arbitrariness: since the forms of expression are arbitrary, they impose discontinuity on the content. […] But the semantic categories themselves (seen from above, as it were) are much more fluid and indeterminate than their realisations in wording imply. The notion of semantic space allows us to adopt a complementary standpoint from which we can view these phenomena topologically, bringing out the inherently elastic quality of the dimensions involved, and gaining a deeper insight into the semogenic processes by which the meaning potential is ongoingly remoulded in the history of the system [phylogenesis], of the user [ontogenesis], and of the text [logogenesis].

Friday, 8 August 2014

Why & How Children Are Able To Construe The Semantic System

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 97):
Children are able to construe the semantic system because they start in situations with a material setting that is shared. As they build up their ideation base, they can begin to construe categories internal to the system out of existing ideational values; and they can begin to move into abstract domains of a purely symbolic world, where the significations of semantic categories are abstract categories in social and socio-semiotic systems. But precisely because these abstract categories are construed as meanings, they can still be built up, negotiated and validated in collaboration with other members of the meaning group. The move from the realm of concrete phenomena to the various realms of abstract phenomena is made possible through the homogenising power of meaning.

Thursday, 7 August 2014

Construing Experience As Meaning

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 96-7):
… young children will typically construe concrete phenomena that are part of the field of visual perception they share with their interactants. In other words, they are construing into linguistic meanings their experience of the material world as it is construed in the categories of another semiotic system, viz. (visual) perception. These extra-linguistic categories are construed as the signification of the semantic categories of the ideation base — always in some particular situation when the child first engages with them. To construe experience of concrete phenomena as meaning is thus to construe some signification which lies outside the ideation base as a value which is internal to the ideation base system. Part of the power of categorisation is that extra-linguistic phenomena that are quite varied in signification can be construed as alike in value.

Wednesday, 6 August 2014

Construing Categories: Valeur & Stratification

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 96):
A phenomenon of experience is construed as a category in the ideation base by being given a location in the three semantic networks […]. This taxonomic, meronymic and eco-functional location is the category’s value (valeur) in relation to the other categories in the ideation base. By being assigned a value internal to the ideational system, a semantic category is also being related to categories that lie beyond semantics itself. On the one hand it is being related to categories within systems that lie outside language but which the semantic system interfaces with; on the other hand it is being related to the grammatical categories in terms of which it is realised.

Tuesday, 5 August 2014

The Semogenic Strategy Of Opening Up The Phenomenal Domains Of Selection

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 95):
… the fact that a participant serves a participant rôle in a figure can be viewed either from the perspective of the figure or from the perspective of the participant (i.e. as a property of the participant). If cats kill mice, the ideation base accommodates the view from the angle of the figure: ‘cats kill mice’; but it also accommodates the view from the angle of the participant: ‘animals that kill mice’. Here the figure in which cats participate as actors has been construed as if it was a property, so that the category of cats might be construed within the ideation base by means of the definition ‘cats are animals that kill mice’. … 
There is a general semogenic strategy at work here. We referred to ‘sequences’, ‘figures’ and ‘elements’ as three orders of complexity […] . The shift in perspective means that configurations of meanings that are of a particular order of complexity can be accessed through selection not only in their normal environment (within phenomena of the next higher order of complexity) but also within phenomena of lower orders of complexity. Through this semogenic strategy of opening up the possible domains of selection, a great deal of experiential complexity can be imported into the construal of a participant.

Monday, 4 August 2014

Eco-Functional Selection Is Inter-Axial

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 94):
The network of selection is inter-axial in that it relates syntagmatic specifications to paradigmatic ones; it ‘cuts across’ the paradigmatic organisation of the ideation base, establishing correspondences between paradigmatic types through syntagmatic functions associated with them …

Sunday, 3 August 2014

Eco-Functional Selections Are Bi-Directional

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 94):
… functions associated with paradigmatic types constitute ‘structural properties’ by which these types are distinguished and […] selections provide further information about these properties. […] Conversely, semantic types which are selected are characterised by the functional environment in which they are selected.

Saturday, 2 August 2014

Why Eco-Functional ‘Selection’ Rather Than ‘Preselection’?

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 94):
Such selections have been referred to as “pre-selections”, but in order to avoid any connotations of temporal sequence, we prefer the term “selection” for such relations in the ideation base.

Friday, 1 August 2014

The Third Type Of Network Involved In The Organisation Of The Ideation Base: Eco-Functional Selection

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 94):
Taxonomic elaboration and meronymic extension form complementary networks of relations that together make up the paradigmatic organisation of the ideation base. They define, as we have noted, options in delicacy of categorisation and in delicacy of focus. The third type of network involved in the organisation of the ideation base which we identified above serves to relate paradigmatic organisation and syntagmatic organisation. Specifically, it relates syntagmatic functions or rôles associated with paradigmatic types to the paradigmatic types that can serve these functions. For example, the syntagmatic function ‘Senser’ is associated with the paradigmatic type ‘sensing’, and it is related to the paradigmatic type ‘conscious being’, since only participants of this subtype can serve as Sensers. […] We shall refer to such a network relations as eco-functional selection in order to indicate that they specify the syntagmatic environment of semantic types by showing them as selections for syntagmatic functions.