Wednesday, 24 February 2016

Questions "Predicting" Answers

Martin (1992: 438):
The obvious candidate for macro-Theme in a writing exercise of this kind is the question: What would you like to do at the end of your rehabilitation? And like to do does predict the hyper-Themes of the reply:
My first choice is to go back to work at the hospital.
I would also like to go to a sheltered workshop.

Blogger Comments:

[1] A macro-Theme (of a text) is Martin's rebranding of 'introductory paragraph'; see previous post.  Here a question from an interviewer — which the interviewee spends the rest of the text answering — is interpreted as functioning the same an introductory paragraph.

[2] A hyper-Theme (of a paragraph) is Martin's rebranding of 'topic sentence'; see previous post. Here two of the interviewee's responses to the interviewer's question are each interpreted as functioning the same as a topic sentence.

[3] Here an interviewer's demand for information is interpreted as "predicting" the requested information given by an interviewee.  That is, a question is said to "predict" the answer it requests.  However, the question only solicits a reply, it does not predict the actual information given in the reply — the lexical cohesion of like–choice–like notwithstanding.