Friday, 31 October 2014

Grammatical Reactances Of Figures: Nature Of Participants — Consciousness & Phenomenality

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 135):
In a mental clause, the Senser is endowed with consciousness … .  This constraint does not apply to any of the participants in material and relational clauses.  While the Senser is heavily restricted in this way, the other mental participant, the Phenomenon, is entirely unrestricted: it can be not only phenomenal (she remembered the old house) but also macro-phenomenal (act: she remembered him coming down the stairs) or meta-phenomenal (fact: she remembered that they had been happy in the old house).  Participants in material clauses cannot be meta-phenomenal.  For instance, while it is possible to demolish not only concrete things such as buildings but also abstract things such as ideas and arguments (she demolished the house / their ideas / his argument), it is not possible to demolish “meta-things” (we do not find she demolished that the earth was flat).

Thursday, 30 October 2014

Grammatical Reactances Of Figures: Directionality Of Process

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 134-5):
Many mental processes are typically bidirectional, appearing in two opposite configurations (I like it / it pleases me; cf. detest/revolt; fear/frighten; remember/remind, notice/strike). It is thus possible to construe conscious processing either as the Phenomenon impinging on the Senser’s consciousness (the music pleases him) or as the Senser’s consciousness having the Phenomenon as its domain (he likes the music). neither material nor relational* clauses display this dual directionality.

*Blogger Comment:

Identifying relational processes are bidirectional in their coding, decoding vs encoding, and these are proportional to the bidirectionality of mental processes, emanating vs impinging, respectively:

Process: mental
Process: identifying

Process: mental
Process: identifying

Wednesday, 29 October 2014

Grammatical Realisation Of Figures: Transitivity

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 134):
… doing & happening are realised as material clauses, sensing as mental ones, saying as verbal ones, and being (at, etc.) & having as relational clauses. The different process types are not signalled overtly in the grammar; they are covert or cryptotypic categories and emerge only when we consider their reactances.

Tuesday, 28 October 2014

Process/Participant Complementarity: Deixis

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 133-4):
The complementarity can also be seen in the different kinds of deixis (relation to the here & now) associated with processes on the one hand and participants on the other. A process is made finite — it is pinned down in time, with point of reference in the act of speaking. A participant is made determinate, being held in a location within a referential space. The same distinction also appears in the temporal unfolding of a text, where participants have the potential to persist as discourse referents, but processes are excluded, unless they are turned into honorary participants through the use of grammatical metaphor.

Monday, 27 October 2014

Process/Participant Complementarity: Temporal Unfolding

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 133):
Whatever the mode of occurrence of any figure, it will always unfold in time. This temporal unfolding is construed as an inherent property of the process itself, realised grammatically as tense and aspect; it thus serves to validate the distinction between process and participant. Whereas on the one hand in its manifestation as a process, the figure unfolds in time, in its manifestation as participant, on the other hand, it persists through time — whether or not the participant undergoes any change of state. The limiting case is a creative or destructive process, such as writing or erasing a symbol, through which a participant comes into being or ceases to exist.

Sunday, 26 October 2014

Doing & Being As Complementary Perspectives

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 132): 
Figures of doing and being can be interpreted as complementary perspectives on a ‘quantum of change’. Construed as doing, a change appears as a change in the thusness of a participant. Construed as being, the change appears as an achieved or attainable result.  Consider a causal consequence such as [doing:] ‘he washed it’ —<so>—> [being:] ‘it was clean’. This quantum of change may be construed as two figures, as it is here (He washed it, so it was clean.).   Alternatively, it may be construed as one figure, in which case it may adopt either point of view.   If construed as doing, he washed it clean, the figure is elaborated with a result.   If construed as being, he made it (be) clean, the figure is enhanced with an agentive Attributor.  The wording he cleaned it embodies both perspectives in a single process.

Saturday, 25 October 2014

Doing Vs Being: The Parameter Of Energy

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 132):
Doing requires some input to occur. This will typically come from one of the participants involved, the doer (as with voluntary motion); but the source of energy may also be outside the figure (as with falling). No input of energy is required with a figure of being.

Friday, 24 October 2014

Doing Vs Being: The Parameter Of Time

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 132):
Doing involves a change over time of occurrence (including maintaining a state in spite of force for change). The change may take place along any one of a number of dimensions: 
  • (a) circumstantial: spatial (motion or disposition, concrete or abstract); 
  • (b) intensive: qualitative (colour, size, shape, solidity, etc.), quantitative (increase, decrease); 
  • (c) possessive (transfer of ownership, loss or accretion of parts); 
  • (d) existential (creation or destruction). 
In contrast, being does not depend on change over time. As a figure of being unfolds over time, the only change is that embodied in the temporal unfolding of the process itself. The nature of of the actualisation will be the same at any point of time.

Thursday, 23 October 2014

Doing Vs Being: Parameters Of Time & Energy

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 132):
Doing and being do not preclude the involvement of a conscious participant; but they do not require it — and hence do not have the effect of endowing a participant with human-like consciousness. They can be differentiated in terms of two parameters, time and energy, both of which are involved in their actualisation.

Wednesday, 22 October 2014

Domains Of Experience: Indeterminacy

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 131):
There is of course a great deal of indeterminacy here, including such borderline cases as those where sensing and saying are construed as forms of action (and therefore cannot project), e.g. watching, listening, chatting, speaking. These properties reflect the borderline location of such processes in the overall semantic space.

Tuesday, 21 October 2014

Doing Vs Being

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 131):
The domain outside this conscious-semiotic [sensing, saying] centre of the ideational universe is then quintessentially either active (doing) or inert (being).

Monday, 20 October 2014

Interior Vs Exterior Symbolic Processing: Directionality

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 131):
Saying is construed as proceeding from Sayer to Receiver (she asked/told/commanded him — ‘she addressed him’). In contrast, sensing embodies two complementary perspectives: either the Senser’s involvement in the sensing ranges over the Phenomenon or the Phenomenon is construed as impacting on the Senser’s consciousness (she likes the design : the design pleases her).

Sunday, 19 October 2014

Interior Vs Exterior Symbolic Processing: Addressee

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 130):
Figures of saying construe the addressee of exterior symbolic processing in the form of a participant, the Receiver, as in She told/asked/commanded him…; She said to him / asked of him…. In contrast, interior symbolic processing cannot be addressed; figures of sensing cannot be configured with a Receiver.

Saturday, 18 October 2014

Interior & Exterior Symbolisers: Senser & Sayer

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 130): 
Sensing and saying construe the "Symboliser" along different lines.  The interior Symboliser of sensing is construed as a participant engaged in conscious processing; hence it is endowed with consciousness by virtue of serving in a figure of sensing. … The “Symboliser” of a figure of saying often is a conscious speaker. However, since saying is exterior rather than interior symbolic processing, the Symboliser of saying, unlike that of sensing, is not restricted to human consciousness; it may also be any kind of symbol source, a ‘semiotic thing’ such as institutions, documents and instruments of measurement. … We recognise the difference between a Symboliser of sensing and a Symboliser of saying by calling them Senser and Sayer, respectively.

Friday, 17 October 2014

Symbolic Processing & Levels Of Projected Content: Ideas & Locutions

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 129):
“Symbolic processing” is a generalisation across sensing and saying that foregrounds the fact that they can both project. But sensing and saying differ in the level of projection: sensing projects interior content, ideas; saying projects exterior content, locutions. The level of the projected content determines the typical status of the projected content: locutions may be either quoted or reported, with quoting being favoured in many types of discourse; in contrast, ideas are typically reported and only rarely quoted. That is, ideas are construed as being further removed [than locutions] from experience that is shared. Projection thus construes a distinction between interior symbolic processing (sensing) and exterior symbolic processing (saying).

Thursday, 16 October 2014

Symbolic Processing And Projected Symbolic Content

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 129):
… the projecting figure represents symbolic processing, processing that brings another figure into symbolic existence. Figures of symbolic processing involve the symbolic process itself (thinking, saying etc) and a participant engaged in the symbolic processing, as in ‘Symboliser’: she + ‘Process’: said/thought —> that he had left. The projected symbolic content is either a proposition (she said/thought —> he had left) or a proposal (she asked him —> to leave; she wanted —> him to leave).

Wednesday, 15 October 2014

Levels Of Sensing & Saying And Levels Of Content

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 128-9):
Projecting sequences differentiate rather sharply between figures of sensing and saying, on the one hand, and figures of doing and being, on the other, by selecting figures of sensing and saying as the ones that have the special power of setting up other figures as second-order, semiotic reality. That is, projecting sequences construe figures of sensing and saying on two levels, the level of sensing/saying itself, and the level of the content of sensing/saying.

Tuesday, 14 October 2014

Four Primary Domains Of Experience

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 128):
The system of figures construes experience as falling into four broadly conceived domains of goings-on: doing (including happening), sensing, saying and being (including having). Each type of figure has its own set of participant rôles.

Monday, 13 October 2014

Figures Embody Two Subtheories Of Experience

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 128):
There are two interlocking aspects of the configuration of a figure:
(i) the domain of experience to which the figure belongs; and
(ii) the nature of the interaction among its participants. 
To put this another way: as a theory of experience, the semantic system of figures embodies two subtheories: one concerning different domains of experience and one concerning the ways in which participating phenomena can interact.

Sunday, 12 October 2014

Figures Are Configurations Of Elemental Phenomena

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 128):
Compositionally, figures are phenomenal units that are formed by configurations of other phenomena (elements). Being “units” means that they are constituted as organic wholes with functionally distinct parts.  In this respect they differ from sequences, which are not compositional units but loci of serial expansion and projection.

Saturday, 11 October 2014

Figures Embody One Quantum Of Change

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 128):
… a figure is a basic fragment of experience that embodies one quantum of change. As such, it is like a little drama — it is a constellation of actors and props; and it unfolds through time.

Friday, 10 October 2014

Expansion & Projection As Trans-Phenomenal Categories

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 127):
Sequences at lower ranks than that of figures retain their logical mode of realisation in the grammar. Expansion and projection thus flow throughout the system, forming sequences. This is in fact an instance of a general principle: expansion and projection are trans–phenomenal categories in the sense that they are manifested over the system as a whole — not merely in different logical environments across ranks, but also experientially. […] This feature is particularly exploited when the system is expanded through grammatical metaphor.

Thursday, 9 October 2014

Semantic Sequences & Grammatical Complexing

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 127):
One question that arises here is the extent to which the semantics and the grammar are in phase with one another. It is conceivable that a semantic sequence of figures could be realised in the grammar by a single clause with complexes at group/word rank — i.e., the sequencing is downranked in the course of realisation. One argument in favour of exploring this possibility is that it would be possible to sort out the potential ambiguity of examples such as Henry and Anne went to the movies — grammatically, we have a group complex (Henry and Anne), but semantically, it could be either a sequence of figures […] or a sequence of elements […].

Wednesday, 8 October 2014

The Limiting Case Of Expansion: Sequence Of Elements

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 126-7):
The limiting case is that where what is being expanded is not a figure but an element of a figure, in which case instead of a sequence of figures we get a sequence of elements, realised by group or phrase complexes. […] Putting this in terms of the grammar, the sequential relationships remain constant, but the rank at which the complex occurs depends on the domain being related.

Tuesday, 7 October 2014

Sequence Relations Of Expansion & Projection: Domain Of Relation

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 126):
To say that these relations are between figures means in principle that they hold between figures as a whole; that is, given a pair of related figures the domain of expansion or projection relation between them is each of the figures in its entirety. But in some instances, some subdomain may be particularly implicated. This is perhaps especially true with elaborating sequences — the grammar of hypotactic elaborating clause complexes tells us as much: the elaborating dependent clause includes a relative reference expression (if the clause is finite) and the clause is placed immediately after the domain that is being elaborated, whether that is the whole clause […] or some element within the clause […].

Monday, 6 October 2014

Dissociation Of Sequence & Clause Complex: Sequence Or Figure? [Diagnostic]

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 126):
The grammar forms complexes at ranks below the clause, of course […]. It is always possible to interpret certain instances of these as sequences that have been ‘shrunk’ by the grammar because they share one or more elements. Thus Henry and Anne went to the store might be interpreted as a simple figure if they went to the store together but as a sequence if they went there separately.

Sunday, 5 October 2014

Dissociation Of Sequence & Clause Complex: Clause Element Realising Figure In Sequence

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 126):
In addition, one or more of the figures in the [sequence] may be realised by something ‘less than’ a clause. One major source of this is ideational grammatical metaphor […]. But there are also other cases such as circumstances of Rôle with temporal implications — for example: as a child, he was very shy ‘when he was a child, he was very shy’.

Saturday, 4 October 2014

Dissociation Of Sequence & Clause Complex: Clause Complex Realising Figure

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 125-6):
On the other hand, a clause complex may in principle correspond to a figure rather than a sequence.  This happens through grammatical metaphor of an interpersonal kind: an interpersonal modality that would be realised congruently as a modal auxiliary (can, may, will &c.) or a modal adjunct (perhaps, probably &c.) is ‘upgraded’ to the status of projecting clause in a clause complex; for example:
I don’t suppose || there’s very much                             ‘there is probably not’

Friday, 3 October 2014

Dissociation Of Sequence & Clause Complex: Sequence Realised Beyond The Clause Complex

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 125):
On the one hand, a sequence may extend beyond a single clause complex […]. That is, the general potential is simultaneously semantic and grammatical; but in the creation of […] text, this potential may be taken up semantically to create a sequence that is more extensive than the clause complexes realising it. […] 
In other words, once sequence and clause complex have become partly dissociated so that one sequence does not automatically imply one clause complex, the decision how to associate them in realisation becomes a meaningful, significant choice.  (This significance may vary from one register to another, but the principle that the choice is meaningful is quite general.)

Thursday, 2 October 2014

Sequences (Semantics) And Clause Complexes (Grammar) Evolve Together

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 124-5):
… semantics and grammar evolve together (in all three senses of semohistory …).  In the present context that means that sequences and clause complexes evolve together.  The basic principle is that a sequence is realised by a clause complex. But the two may become dissociated from one another.

Wednesday, 1 October 2014

Interactional Sequences

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 124):
We can generalise as follows: the logical resources for forming sequences have evolved in the environment of ideational meaning as sequences of figures. But these highly generalised resources can then also be applied in an interpersonal environment to form interactional sequences. (We should note here, however, that evidence from language development studies suggests that the logico-semantic relations are first construed in interpersonal contexts). In producing a text, we may use either or both, depending on the nature of the text.