Wednesday, 30 September 2015

The Realisational Relationship Between Semantics And Lexicogrammar

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 378-9):
Semantic features are realised by lexicogrammatical ones; we have illustrated this relationship within the ideational metafunction at various points in our discussion (e.g. sequence realised by clause complex; figure of doing realised by material clause).  The realisational relationship between semantics and lexicogrammar is one of preselection: semantic features such as 'sequence', 'figure', and 'doing', are realised in lexicogrammar by means of prespecification of lexicogrammatical information, most centrally preselection of lexicogrammatical features.   
For instance, 'doing' is realised by the preselection of the clause feature 'material', which means that the clause that realises a figure of doing is constrained to be a material clause.

Tuesday, 29 September 2015

The Text Base As Resource For Text Development & Interpretation

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 378):
From the speaker’s point of view, the text base is a resource for developing a text, message by message, and for guiding the listener in his/her interpretation of the text; and from the listener’s point of view, it is a resource for constructing such an interpretation (for building up an instantial system …).

Monday, 28 September 2015

The Text Base: Messages

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 378): 
The text base is oriented towards the ideation base and the interaction base. It provides the resources for constructing meanings from these two bases as information of a kind that can be shared as text. An ideational figure and an interpersonal move are constructed as information in the form of a message. Such a message is related to the preceding discourse and differentiates informational statuses in terms of thematicity and newsworthiness.

Sunday, 27 September 2015

Exchange Relationships And Domain Models

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 378): 
A particular domain model within the ideation base correlates with a particular exchange relationship within the interaction base and together they form the ideational and interpersonal aspects of a register. An exchange relationship thus has ideational implications: it involves the exchange of some ideational meanings rather than others and it embodies a division of labour between the interactants in an exchange relationship. … An exchange relationship thus gives interpersonal values to meanings within the domain model it is associated with.

Saturday, 26 September 2015

The Interaction Base: Exchange Relationship Protocols

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 377-8): 
Midway between potential and instance, sets of such strategies cluster within ranges of tenor values. Such a cluster is the interpersonal analogue of a domain in the ideation base: it is a region within the overall interpersonal space of meaning, selected according to tenor, just as a domain is a region within the overall ideational space of meaning, selected according to field. The options in interpersonal meaning that make up the cluster together enact a tenor relationship … We might call such a cluster an exchange relationship to foreground that it is semantic (i.e. constituted in meaning through exchanges of meaning) and that it is interpersonal (rather than one-sidedly personal). To indicate that it is analogous to a domain model, we might have called it an exchange or interaction “model”; but we have avoided that term because it suggests a construal of something and construal is the ideational mode of meaning — it is more like a protocol than a model.

Friday, 25 September 2015

The Interaction Base: System

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 377):
At the potential end of the cline of instantiation, the interpersonal strategies that have the move as their domain are defined by all the options persons have in exchanging meanings with one another, adopting speech rôles of giving/demanding information or goods–&–services and assigning complementary rôles of accepting or giving on demand to the addressee. These constitute all the patterns of interaction within a culture.

Thursday, 24 September 2015

The Interaction Base: Moves

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 376-7):
The interaction base provides the resources for enacting social rôles and relations as meaning, (prototypically) in dialogue. The interaction base includes the strategies for adopting and assigning speech rôles, for giving and demanding assessments, and the like. The locus of these strategies is a unit of interaction or move. A move is typically mapped onto a figure from the ideation base: a speaker construes a quantum of experience as a figure and enacts this figure as a move in dialogue, either as a proposition or as a proposal. This mapping between figure and move is a central feature of the way we jointly construct and negotiate experience.

Wednesday, 23 September 2015

The Ideation Base

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 376):
…the ideation base includes both the most general ideational meaning potential and a repertoire of domain models located along the cline of instantiation midway between potential and instance and associated with particular ranges of values within field.

Tuesday, 22 September 2015

The Meaning Base

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 376):
The semantic system, or “meaning base”, thus consists of the three familiar metafunctional contributions […]: the ideation base, […] the interaction base and the text base.  All three bases are extended along the cline of instantiation from potential to instance.

Monday, 21 September 2015

Different Context Specifications Realised By Different Registers

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 376):
A given contextual specification of field, tenor and mode is thus realised by “preselecting” a register within the semantic system … This contextual preselection within the semantics narrows down the overall potential to a registerial subpotential; a field specification narrows down the ideational potential from that of the overall ideation base to that of a domain model.

Sunday, 20 September 2015

Registers: Semantic Stratum

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 376): 
These are, in the first instance, registerial subsystems of the semantic system. A register is a semantic region within the overall semantic space. It is made up of contributions from all three metafunctions: a domain within the ideation base and similar regions within the interpersonal and textual parts of the overall semantic space.

Saturday, 19 September 2015

Contextual Regions Co-Evolve With Registers

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 376):
Such contextual regions [‘within the overall system of the context of culture’] evolve together with special functional varieties of the language or “registers”.

Friday, 18 September 2015

Contextual Regions

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 375):
There are three sets of contextual systems — field, tenor and mode … Recurrent combinations of (ranges of) field, tenor and mode values define regions within the overall system of the context of culture.

Thursday, 17 September 2015

The System Of Context [Defined]

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 375):
Context is the ‘semiotic environment’ of language (and other socio-semiotic systems such as image systems [maps, diagrams, etc]); its systems specify what demands may be placed on language and what rôle it may play in responding to those demands.

Wednesday, 16 September 2015

Inter–Stratal Realisation: Preselection

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 375):
More specifically, inter-stratal realisation is specified by means of inter-stratal preselection: contextual features are realised by preselection within the semantic system, semantic features are realised by preselection within the lexicogrammatical system, and lexicogrammatical features are realised by preselection within the phonological/graphological system.

Tuesday, 15 September 2015

Why Inter–Stratal Realisation Is Stated In Terms Of The Higher Stratum

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 375):
In systemic theory, this relationship is stated in terms of the organisation of the higher stratum — for a simple reason: a higher stratum provides a more comprehensive environment than a lower one (as our stratal figures with [co-tangential] circles suggest).

Monday, 14 September 2015

Context Vs Language

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 375):
The resources are stratified into context and language; language is in turn stratified into semantics, lexicogrammar and phonology/graphology. … the processes of instantiation are guided by this stratification.

Sunday, 13 September 2015

Modelling Domains Of Ideational Meaning

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 370):
… in our view, the modelling of specific domains of ideational meaning is an essential component of our theoretical understanding of the nature of human cognition.

Saturday, 12 September 2015

Agent: Metathings & ±Abstract Things

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 361):
… in the overall ideational potential, agents of processes can be metathings as well as things and, within things, abstractions as well as physical objects, tools, animals, persons and natural forces …

Friday, 11 September 2015


Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 359):
… facts, ideas or locutions.

Thursday, 10 September 2015

Procedural Texts

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 356):
… a sequence of operations for arriving at some well–defined end result … it is a macro-operation, consisting of a number of atomic micro–operations. It is dominated by procedures … that lead to some specific goal: the dominant cause is purposive … From an interpersonal point of view, … it is a macro–proposal, consisting of a number of instructions or directions to the reader.

Wednesday, 9 September 2015

Weather Forecast Texts

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 355):
… put in terms of scale, a weather forecast construes a macro-being — the meteorological state of the environment — consisting of a number of atomic micro–beings which move in and out of existence of their own accord.

Tuesday, 8 September 2015

Visual Semiotic Systems

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 355):
Many visual semiotic systems are ‘paraphrastic’ [with language] in this sense [ie ‘could be construed as alternative realisations of the same semantic figure or sequence of figures’], although certainly not all.

Monday, 7 September 2015

Construing An Instance Of A Situation Type

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 354):
In weather forecasting, while the weather itself is not constituted of language, the activity of forecasting is; the entire situation is built up out of black marks on large white pieces of paper towards which is directed the attention of some human consciousness. Out of this is construed a particular context or situation–type; since the semantics is specific to that situation, the reader knows where he is, construes the situation in a particular instantial form (‘oh — so it’s going to rain this afternoon’), and perhaps varies his actions in accordance with this construction.

Sunday, 6 September 2015

The Cline From ‘Language In Reflection’ To ‘Language In Action’

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 354):
In situations of the ‘language in action’ kind, where the discourse is a relatively minor component of the total activity, the grammar and the semantics are obviously less constructive of the whole than in a ‘reflection’ context

Saturday, 5 September 2015

Text & Context

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 354):
… text and context are construed together.

Friday, 4 September 2015

The Construction Of Meaning

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 353):
… our metatheoretic position is that the construction of meaning is both a discourse–semantic and a lexicogrammatical process.

Thursday, 3 September 2015

Delicacy & Agnation

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 353):
In a paradigmatic model such as the present one, both the lexicogrammar and the semantics accommodate variable delicacy: two agnate constructions may be both ‘the same’ and ‘different’ according to the delicacy of focus adopted.

Wednesday, 2 September 2015

Figures Of Being: Ascribing & Existing

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 338): 
Ascribing (‘being’ in the sense of carrying an attribute), like existing, distinguishes a neutral phase ‘be’ and marked phases of becoming, staying or ceasing to be.

Tuesday, 1 September 2015

Being: Existing

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 336): 
Existing includes being in existence, coming into existence (emerging) and staying in exist[ence] (persisting); with or without some external cause.