Functional Linguistics

http://link.springer.com/journal/40554

List of Papers (Total 56)

The semiotic sense of context vs the material sense of context

This paper investigates the relationship between culture and language through analyzing material and semiotic features in a context of language-in-use. The paper first discusses what is meant by ‘material’ and ‘semiotic’ context from an SFL perspective. It then investigates the way in which these two ‘senses’ of context may converge within a specific instance, affecting...

Pedagogic register analysis: mapping choices in teaching and learning

This paper offers a method for analysing pedagogic practice of all kinds that is detailed, exhaustive and appliable to designing effective teaching practice. The analysis builds on research into the structuring of pedagogic discourse by applying systemic functional (SF) research methods to the contextual stratum of register. Each meaningful element of pedagogic practice is...

Lexical metaphor as affiliative bond in newspaper editorials: a systemic functional linguistics perspective

From the perspective of systemic functional linguistics (SFL), lexical metaphors are recognized as a resource for enacting interpersonal meaning in discourse. Within the appraisal framework, they constitute a means for ‘provoking’ an attitudinal interpretation. While the interpersonal function of lexical metaphors is well recognized in SFL, there have been relatively few studies...

Lexis as most local context: towards an SFL approach to lexicology

The world of lexis is vast and complex and it is generally accepted in psycholinguistics that it is represented as part of a large complex network. However, in systemic functional linguistics (SFL) modelling lexis has remained a relatively underdeveloped area of the theory. The ideas underpinning this paper stem from exploring the interface of context and lexicology, asking how...

Ideology and the text-in-context relation

While aspects of Halliday’s theory have been adopted for the study of ideology in discourse - in particular via Critical Discourse Analysis - these applications of his ideas have not attempted to bring the full weight of Halliday’s model to the problem of understanding the phenomenon and practical manifestation of ideology. A consideration of Halliday’s model reveals, first of...

From explicit to implicit orientation: mapping rank scale to modality in English and Chinese

In Systemic Functional Grammar, modality is treated as a semantic domain that extends across more than one grammatical environment. The basic distinction that determines various realizations of modality is modeled as the system of ORIENTATION. This paper aims to compare the explicit/implicit manifestations of modality in English and Chinese, a relatively less discussed issue in...

A review of Jonathan J. Webster and Xuanwei Peng (eds.), Applying Systemic Functional Linguistics: the state of the art in China today. London & New York: Bloomsbury Academic, 2017

The present paper is to review Applying Systemic Functional Linguistics: the state of the art in China today, a volume to highlight the contribution of Chinese scholars to the development of systemic functional linguistics.

On the notion of abstraction in systemic functional linguistics

This article provides an in-depth analysis of the theoretical dimensions of stratification, instantiation, and delicacy within Systemic Functional Linguistics (SFL). It does so by examining the nature of the concept of ‘abstraction’ with respect to these terms. The claim is that, although the same term is used in each case, the precise meaning of abstraction differs depending on...

The extent to which the passive voice is used in the scientific journal article, 1985–2015

Some recent research has suggested that use of the passive voice in scientific writing has declined over the last few years. This study attempts to see to what extent that is true. The corpus consists of 32 scientific articles with 8 taken from the publications of the Royal Society of London for each of the years 1985, 1995, 2005 and 2015. Half of the articles are from Series A...

Using the Appraisal framework to analyze source use in essays: a case study of engagement and dialogism in two undergraduate students’ writing

A key element of academic writing involves incorporation of external voices, which is a complex rhetorical and linguistic task. Student writers must face this challenge of using sources to strengthen their own arguments. Appraisal, specifically Engagement, provides a useful framework for analyzing source use in texts, as it considers evaluation and dialogic voicing. This article...

‘On the grammar of death’: the construal of death and killing in Colombian newspapers

The aims of this paper are twofold. First, following Halliday’s 1998 paper ‘On the grammar of pain’, this study maps the lexicogrammatical resources available to Spanish speakers in the register of hard news to construe death and killing. Based primarily on a 250,000+ corpus of news reports of violent actions by illegal armed groups in the internal conflict from four major...

An interpersonal sketch of the biblical Hebrew clause

The aim of the present paper is to describe the Biblical Hebrew clause as a locus of interpersonal meanings from a systemic functional perspective. Although systemic functional linguistics has been applied to the description of an increasing number of languages in recent years, systemic functional accounts of Semitic languages remain limited in number. This paper brings together...

A review of Lise Fontaine, Tom Bartlett and Gerard O’Grady (eds.), Systemic functional linguistics exploring choice. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2013. 533pp

Systemic Functional Linguistics Exploring Choice provides a fresh inter-disciplinary perspective on the key notion of choice in Systemic Functional Linguistics (SFL). Although one of the basic assumptions of SFL is that language is a system of choices, the very nature and the place of choice have not been explicitly and critically debated within current SFL literature. With a...

Surveying the historical landscape: the evaluative voice of history textbooks

Much attention has been devoted to understanding the rhetorical features of history texts and how they position readers to take up particular views toward the past. One useful taxonomy for investigating evaluative meaning from the systemic-functional tradition is the Appraisal framework. Voice Theory extends this framework to account for the particular combinations of Appraisal...

The early semantics of the neologism BREXIT: a lexicogrammatical approach

The aim of this paper is to examine the nominality of the neologism BREXIT using a corpus-informed lexicogrammatical approach. The term BREXIT, coined in 2012, used initially in print and social media in the UK is now internationally wide-spread. BREXIT is a blend of British + exit, which expresses the meaning of’Britain exiting from the EU’. Although ‘Brexit’ clearly expresses...

Circumstantiation: taking a broader look at circumstantial meanings

This paper argues for a view of circumstantial meaning as a region of ideational meaning that is instantiated across a range of lexicogrammatical structures: from the rank of the clausal constituent of circumstance in both directions: up to clause rank and down to below or within constituent rank (eg as Qualifier). This paper brings together and extends the work of Halliday...

Disciplinary variations in academic promotional writing: the case of statements of purpose

This paper explores disciplinary variations in academic promotional writing via a comparative analysis of statements of purpose (SoPs) written for different disciplines. A total of 100 SoPs written by English as an additional language (EAL) applicants from mainland China were collected, which were drawn from five academic disciplines: business, engineering, humanities, science...

An exploratory study of ESL writing by junior secondary students in China: text type, register and textual features

While interest in L2 writing research has increased exponentially in recent years, research on adolescent L2 writing remains relatively scarce. Drawing on the framework of functional text analysis, namely context-based text typology and register theory, the present study aimed to explore Chinese adolescent L2 writing from the perspective of writing as meaning making. Ten...

An analysis of the evaluation contexts in academic discourse

This paper develops a new framework to examine the use of ‘evaluation resources’ in research discourse. In previous studies of evaluative resources, two distinct, although interwoven, types of context have been identified: 1) the real world where evaluation resources are used to describe situations, and 2) the research world studying the real world, where they are used to engage...

Coherence in Hong Lou Meng and its English translations: an exploratory investigation

Coherence can be studied from both logical and textual perspectives in systemic functional linguistics. The logical and textual metafunctions together contribute to the coherence of a text. Coherence is realized through clause complexes and cohesive chains at the lexicogrammatical level from the logical and textual meanings. Clause complex reflects the logical development of the...

Construing the ecological perspective of the Tai Dam as seen in ‘Sen Huen’ ritual manuscripts

This paper is a part of the research project entitled “Transmission of ‘Sen Huen’ ritual as an intangible cultural heritage of Tai Dam ethnic group”. The Sen Huen ritual is a significant aspect of the Tai Dam’s ancestor worship. This ritual has to be conducted in a room set for ancestral spirits called Open image in new window and the ritual is required to be done every 2–3 years...

A review of M. A. K. Halliday, Aspects of Language and Learning

This volume was published as one of the “M.A.K. Halliday Library Functional Linguistics” Series. It is based on a series of lectures given by Professor Halliday at the National University of Singapore in 1986. The theme of these lectures is to construct a linguistically informed theory of education, providing a linguistic interpretation of how people learn. The lectures as a...

“It is hard to mesh all this”: Invoking attitude, persona and argument organisation

This paper focuses on the nature of invoked attitude as part of the Appraisal framework under Systemic Functional Linguistics, offering an amended set of diagnostic tools for tracking the ways that attitude may be invoked or implied in written discourse. Under the appraisal framework, categories of attitude are located in a system network, suggesting that there are a set of...