Sunday, 1 May 2016

Misrepresenting Previous Work On Text Structure And Context

Martin (1992: 504):
Given the strong teleological orientation of systemic work on text structure alongside the uncertainty about how to deal with rhetorical purpose in models of context, it is not surprising that staging is dealt by systemicists in different ways.

Blogger Comment:

This misrepresents the earlier work of systemic linguists in a way that lends unwarranted weight to Martin's own work.  On the one hand, the "strong teleological orientation" is Martin's alone; it is not the orientation of the other theorists he has cited.  On the other hand, "rhetorical purpose" is Martin's invention alone; it is not a term that covers the various approaches to context by the other theorists he has cited.  Only Fawcett uses the concept of purpose, though his notions are 'relationship purpose' and 'pragmatic purpose', not 'rhetorical purpose'.