Wednesday, 24 June 2015

Misconstruing Subtractive And Replacive Variation (Extension) As Subtypes Of Comparison (Enhancement)

Martin (1992: 204):
In addition to the kind of contrast illustrated in [4:95], there are replacement and exception categories to consider.  With replacives (e.g. instead of, in place of) the blurry line between contrast and alternation discussed in 4.2.2 above is hardest to draw:
[4:97]  We had a good day
            except for losing the Best of Show award. 
[4:98]  We won Best of Show
            instead of missing out as usual.

Blogger Comments:

[1] In SFL theory, the logical relation in [4:97] is extension: variation: subtractive ('except').  Its meaning is X but not all X.

[2] In SFL theory, the logical relation in [4:98] is extension: variation: replacive ('instead').  Its meaning is not but Y.

The basic opposition that is proposed for contrast within 'external comparison' (enhancement) is thus actually between subtractive variation (extension) and replacive variation (extension).

Note that the entry condition to this opposition, 'contrast', corresponds in SFL theory to a subtype of addition (adversative), which opposes variation and alternation within extension.

[3] The logical meaning of alternation is X or Y; the logical meaning of 'contrast' (adversative addition) is X and conversely Y.