Wednesday, 2 September 2015

Misrepresenting The Model Of Transitivity

Martin (1992: 278):
Where Halliday (1985) justifies his process types largely on the basis of configurations of Agent, Process and Medium, Hasan additionally draws the Beneficiary role into the picture.

Blogger Comment:

The system of process types isn't justified on configurations of Agent, Process and Medium.  Each of these — process types, on one hand, configurations of Agent, Process and Medium, on the other — represents a distinct complementary perspective on transitivity: the transitive and ergative models, respectively.

The transitive model is concerned with the ways in which processes are different, with each type of process 'characterised by process-participant configurations where the functions are particular to that type' (Halliday & Matthiessen 2004: 280).

The ergative model, on the other hand, is concerned with how the process types are all alike; how 'they all have the same grammar' (Halliday & Matthiessen 2004: 281).