Tuesday, 5 May 2015

Reasoning 'From Below' Instead Of 'From Above' And A Self-Contradiction

Martin (1992: 122):
The analysis being presented here needs to be contrasted with that of Halliday and Hasan (1976: 71-4) who treat homophoric reference as a type of exophora, and who classify generic reference realised by the as a kind of homophora.  Homophora is distinguished from exophora/endophora here because its realisation includes the class of proper names, which class is not used exophorically or endophorically; in other respects the realisation of homophora, exophora and endophora overlaps.

Blogger Comments:

[1] This is reasoning 'from below', in terms of realised forms, instead of 'from above', in terms of the function realised.  This is inconsistent with a functional model of language, where priority is given to the view 'from above' (Halliday & Matthiessen 2014: 49).

[2] As previously explained, the notion of proper names "referring" confuses ideational denotation for textual reference.  The confusion is thus one of metafunction.  On the other hand, even in its own terms, Martin's claim that proper names are "not used exophorically" — i.e. 'pointing outward from the text' — is inconsistent with his claim on the previous page (p121):
As noted above, proper names regularly depend on information retrieved from the context of culture.

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