Saturday, 21 May 2016

Multiple Violations Of Theoretical Dimensions

Martin (1992: 517):
Labelling these text types field-structured and genre-structured is potentially misleading;*
* Endnote #16 (p589):
The distinction does not divide texts into those realising field and those realising genre; all text [sic] realise both field and genre in the model of context developed here.  The argument is rather that with field-structured texts, field (activity sequence) and genre (schematic structure) overdetermine text organisation.

Blogger Comments:

[1] To be clear, to say that text types are either field-structured or genre-structured is to say that semantic structure varies registerially according to whether it is organised by field (ideational context) or genre (text type/register).  In SFL theory, semantic structure realises semantic system (axial relation), and semantics realises context (stratal relation).  See also [4] below.

[2] This blurs the distinction between stratification and instantiation.  It is language (semantics-lexicogrammar-phonology) that realises field (context).  Text is an instance of language, which realises an instance of context (situation).

[3] In SFL theory, the relation between text and genre, in the sense of text type, is instantiation, not realisation.

[4] The 'model of context developed here' confuses the context of language with functional varieties of language, with the latter modelled twice, as register and genre — two levels of symbolic abstraction — with register realising genre.  In SFL theory, register and genre (text type) are the same phenomenon, viewed from opposite ends of the cline of instantiation.

[5] As previously noted, this confuses strata: semantics (activity sequences) with context (field).

[6] In terms of SFL theory, this confuses text type (genre) with the structural dimension of the semantic stratum (schematic structure).