Text Linguistics: The How and Why of Meaning

Text Linguistics: The How and Why of Meaning

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Equinox Publishing


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Text Linguistics: The How and Why of Meaning

Whether prose or poetry, how does a text come to mean what it does? A functional-semantic approach to text analysis, such as is illustrated in this book, offers a revealing look at the resources of language at work in the creation of meaning, and a unique perspective on the text as object of study. This collaborative work between M.A.K. Halliday, the founder of Systemic Functional Linguistics, and Jonathan Webster, the editor of Halliday's eleven volume collected works, draws on a considerable body of Halliday's previously unpublished work, including lectures on fundamental concepts in Systemic-Functional Theory, to present a foundational overview suitable to those who are new to the theory and methodology of Systemic Functional Grammar and Rhetorical Structure Theory. Building on this foundation, section two presents the findings from several case studies in text analysis, demonstrating how to conduct detailed functional-semantic analysis of the speeches of Billy Graham, Barack Obama, Richard Nixon, Steve Jobs and Susan Rice. This second section will benefit both beginners and those who have already had some background in the study of linguistics.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781904768487
Publisher: Equinox Publishing
Publication date: 09/30/2014
Series: Equinox Textbooks and Surveys in Linguistics Series
Pages: 436
Product dimensions: 6.70(w) x 9.60(h) x 1.00(d)

About the Author

M.A.K. Halliday was born in Yorkshire in 1925. He was trained in Chinese for war service with the British army; studied in China, taught Chinese in Britain for a number of years, then moved into linguistics, becoming in 1965 Professor of General Linguistics at University College London. In 1975 he was appointed Foundation Professor of Linguistics at the University of Sydney, where he remained until his retirement. Jonathan J. Webster is Professor, Department of Chinese, Translation and Linguistics, and Director, The Halliday Centre for Intelligent Applications of Language Studies at the City University of Hong Kong. He is also the General Editor of the Equinox journal Linguistics and the Human Sciences and the editor (with Ruqaiya Hasan and Christian Matthiessen) of the two volume Continuing Discourse on Language: A Functional Perspective (Equinox, 2007).

Table of Contents

Acknowledgement Preface Part One: a Functional Approach 1. Functions and Components of Language 2. Experiential systems 3. Material and mental processes 4. Verbal and relational processes 5. Participants and circumstances 6. Things and meta-things 7. Modality in English: modals and pseudo-modals Part Two: Text and Texture 8. Textual meaning 9. Rhetorical structure of texts Part Three: Case Studies in Text Linguistics 10. Stepping into meaning: a case study of Billy Grahams address at the National Prayer and Memorial Service at the Episcopal National Cathedral on 14 September 2001 11. Visualizing the architeXture of a text: analyzing Obamas first inaugural address and Nixons second inaugural address 12. Arriving at a theory of the text: a case study of the commencement addresses delivered by Steve Jobs and Susan Rice

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