Presentation on theme: "1 The Cardiff Grammar: What is it? and Why is it? Robin P. Fawcett Centre for Language and Communication Research Cardiff University."— Presentation transcript:
1 The Cardiff Grammar: What is it? and Why is it? Robin P. Fawcett Centre for Language and Communication Research Cardiff University
Our starting point: the two questions in the lectures title: 1 What is it? 2 Why is it? – i.e. Why does it exist as a separate entity within SFL? Why – and how - did it come into existence? Well take Why is it? first. So... Part 1 will try to answer Why is it? and Part 2 will begin to answer What is it? because the answer to why will explain quite a lot about what the CG is. But first, a brief, interim answer to What is it? 2
Gordon Tucker and I have given lectures and courses introducing the Cardiff Grammar in many counties. A subtitle that I often use answers the question What is it? neatly - but still inadequately: Introduction to the Cardiff Grammar: a cognitive-interactive version of Systemic Functional Grammar for the 21st Century The CG is just as systemic and just as functional as any of the Sydney-based varieties of SFL. 3
Both the Cardiff Grammar (CG) the Sydney Grammar (SG) are components of larger architectures of language and it use. So within SFL there are: two major models of language and its use: the Sydney Model (SM) and the Cardiff Model (CM). The CM differs in emphasis from the SM (or SMs) in several ways – notably in providing a cognitive-interactive framework for modelling language and its use - while still giving a major place to the socio-cultural aspects (on which Halliday and most Sydney-based SF linguists focus). Now: on to... 4
Part 1 Why - and how - did the Cardiff Grammar (and so the Cardiff Model of language and its use) come into existence? 5
6 Purpose of Part 1 To describe the origins, development and current position of a version of SFL that has been explicitly developed to meet the demands to be expected in the 21st Century.
7 This is the story of how a few relatively minor differences in the description of English developed - contrary to the intentions of any member of the Cardiff Group - to become: a distinct theory of language, one with a bibliography of over 250 items, written by over two dozen authors, one about which introductory textbooks have been published in English, Chinese and Spanish. Why tell the story? 1So you will understand more about this major phenomenon that is emerging within SFL; 2So you can decide whether or not it is something you want to know more about - and to use - as many others already have;
8 3To help you to decide whether to buy my Invitation to Systemic Functional Linguistics through the Cardiff Grammar (Fawcett 2008a); 4To tell you how to get hold of other materials, (including sections of forthcoming books – so that you will be in a better position to decide whether or not to use this version of SFL as the basis of your work in linguistics / applied linguistics - as others have already done. But first lets establish...
9 What do you want from a theory of language? What I want: 1a picture - a model - of what language is like, one that enables me to feel that I understand (i) what the various components of a language in use are, (ii) how we use them to produce and understand texts, (iii) what each major component is like inside, and (iv) how they function together in human communication. 2Its grammar must equip me to analyze text-sentences, in terms of their functional syntax, their words, and their intonation or punctuation - and the meanings of all of these. 3It should be based in a soundly-based, scientific approach to understanding language, taking account of recent advances in the field.
10 6It should have proved itself in rigorous testing, e.g. (i) in large quantities of rigorously checked text analysis, (ii)through being implemented in a computer, and in other ways. And that is what the theory of language to be presented here gives to me - and to many others. But note: it is the Cardiff Model of language and its use - not just a grammar.
11 1 How - and why - I chose to work in SFL So - first, a little about myself (my CV!) Born: Sedbergh, Yorkshire (like Halliday and his teacher, J.R Firth) School: Bootham School, York University of Oxford: Modern Languages Institute of Education, University of London: PGCE in TESL Then to Kenya: 1961 Kenya: Kapsabet Secondary School 1963 Kagumo College of Education Kenya Institute of Education: Curriculum Development and Research Unit My task: to develop a new primary English course. What framework? What theory? (In 1965, note!) Chomskys TGG? Hallidays S&C? (only later -> SFG)
12 So I was first - and remain - a teacher (later a researcher, and now a researcher and writer) Then University College London: PhD in Linguistics Topic: to identify the best framework for use in language teaching (Supervisors: Michael Halliday -> Dick Hudson) West Midlands College of Education, then to University of Glamorgan (major corpus project, SF syntax) c.1980 Emergence of the exciting new field of Natural Language Generation (branch of CL) 1987 To Cardiff University 2000 Retired (!) Emeritus Professor So what did I do ?
13 2 SFL at Cardiff University In 1987, within the the Centre for Language and Communication Research Gordon Tucker and I founded the Computational Linguistics Unit (CLU). Main research project: the COMMUNAL Project. Over 0.5 million GBP, (2.5 million RMB) Research goals 1to build (components of) a computer system that would enable humans to communicate with artificial intelligences within computers; 2to use the metaphor of the computer to increase our understanding of human language; 3To use SFL principles, and so to contribute to the further development of SFL theory.
14 Members of the resident CLU team Director: Robin Fawcett: overall model, lexicogrammar, syntax Deputy Director: Gordon Tucker: lexis, lexicogrammar Joan Wright (2 yrs) computing Francis (Yunqing) Lin (6 yrs): computing, general theoretical development, SFLF, discourse structure, etc. David Young: morphology, lexicogrammar Paul Tench: intonation Victor Castel of the University of Cuyo, Mendoza, Argentina (since 2000): computing, genre, discourse, lexicogrammar Over time, many other major research contributions from: several PhD theses (Linguistics AND Computer Science): Tucker, Huang, Neale, Ball, Weerasinghe, Day, Fontaine (and others)
15 Contributions from foreign visiting SFL scholars : from Germany: Prof Erich Steiner (1 yr) from Japan: Prof Masa-aki Tatsuki (Chair of JASFL) (1 yr) Dr Hiroshi Funamoto (1 yr) from Canada: Prof Michael Cummings ( 4 visits) from Australia (then): Dr Mick ODonnell (2 visits) (both working on formalizing the visual representation of system networks) from China: Dr Zhou Xiaokang via Melbourne (1 mth) Prof Huang Guowen, now of Sun Yat-sen University (Chair of CFLA) (2 yrs) Dr Yang Guowen, of the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, Beijing (1 yr)
16 V isiting scholars from abroad Many, including Michael Halliday (Australia) Christian Matthiessen (Sweden-USA-Australia-Hong Kong) Leading figures in NLG: David McDonald (USA) Ehud Reiter (Scotland) And from China: Prof Miao Xingwei of Shandong University (1 yr) Assoc Prof Wang Hongyang of Ningbo University (1 yr) Dr Li Li of Xiamen University (though based at Birmingham) Prof He Wei of USTB, Beijing (1 yr) Professor Zhang Delu of the Ocean University, Qingdao (3 mths).... and many others
17 Hence my many visits to China In 2008: 1Teaching two MA courses at USTB Using the Cardiff Grammar for text analysis Current issues in Linguistic Theory from a SFL perspective 2Visiting lectures at eight other universities. In 2009: 3USTB July-August 2009: SFL semantic analysis In 2010: 4Sun Yat-sen April-May: 5USTB May: Symposium: SFG: the full model (SFG as a generative grammar)
18 The CLU teams activities 1Research on (i) describing English (and later Chinese and Japanese) and (ii) writing computer programs. (More later on research methods, etc) 2Teaching on (i) two undergraduate BAs (Language and Communication, English Language Studies (Fawcett, Tucker, Tench, Young) (ii) postgraduate MA in in Language and Communication (Fawcett, Tucker, Tench) (iii) postgraduate MScs in (a) Computer Science and (b) Cognitive Science (Fawcett) 3Supervising CG-related PhD theses and MSc dissertations (Fawcett, Tucker, Tench, Young)
19 3 The products of 20 years of research (a)Very large computer programs that (i) generate sentences (Fawcett, Tucker, Lin, etc) (ii) generate discourse structures (Fawcett, Davies, Lin) (iii) plan the input to generation (Fawcett, Lin) (iv) analyze (i.e. parse) sentences (Weerasinghe, Day, Fawcett) (v) interpret a syntactic structure as a semantic structure (ODonoghue) So the Cardiff Grammar is just part of the Cardiff Model of Language and its Use - an entire architecture (See the handout)
20 b)Publications on ( i) the computational work on lexicogrammar (which includes semantics, in the Cardiff Model) (ii) other components of COMMUNAL, e.g. SFLF, the belief system, microplanners, parser, etc (iii) the Cardiff Grammar, i.e. descriptions of English, Chinese, Japanese (so far!) and works on theory (e.g. Tucker 1998, Fawcett 2000a) in the form of (i) scholarly books (examples) (ii) scholarly papers in journals and chapters in books – and, in 2008: (iii) textbooks (in Chinese, English and Spanish)
21 Look at the selected bibliography (See the handout) - a demonstration that both the COMMUNAL Project and The Cardiff Grammar are the results of a team effort. Full bibliography: over 250 items by over 25 authors This brings us to …
22 Overview of recent and forthcoming books about the Cardiff Grammar
23 Note especially the recent book publications in Section A the available pre-publications in Section B. These are the mainworks that this lecture is designed to lead on to. You can order Fawcett 2008 with a 25% discount (details on the handout) and the new paperback edition of Fawcett 2000/2010, with a new Preface to the 2010 paperback edition and an updated bibliography with a 30% discount You can order the books in Section C, as they appear, for yourself or your universitys library. And skim Section D to get an impression of the range publications from the Cardiff Model
24 Aside: the future of SFL at Cardiff Gordon Tucker, Paul Tench and I have now all retired - i.e. retired from teaching and admin! NOT from research, writing, lecturing and teaching overseas, etc. The future of SFL at Cardiff is safe in the hands of: Dr Tom Bartlett (lexicogrammar, culture, ideology) Dr Lise Fontaine (lexicogrammar, computer-mediated communication) Dr Gerard OGrady (intonation specialist; replacing Paul Tench)
25 Thats Part 1 of the story. What next? Part 2 of the story What I CANT do in one lecture - show you the whole of the Cardiff Grammar. What I CAN do: - give you reasons for (1) reading the introductory books, (2) considering using Invitation as the version of SFL to teach (plus supporting materials, - see the bibliography on the handout)
26 Part 2 Why has the Cardiff Grammar come into existence as a distinct sub-theory within SFL?
27 What is – or should be - the common ground between the SG and the CG? Let us start by asking: Who is the worlds greatest living linguist? Chomsky? No! Halliday? Yes! A big claim! Grounds? For me: the five revolutionary insights that Halliday introduced in the late 1960s and early 1970s.
28 Hallidays five great innovations in lexicogrammar: are they the common ground for all SFGs?
29 Background In the early 1960s, Linguistics was pre-occupied with syntagmatic relations at the level of form - i.e. with syntax. Most obvious in Chomskys TG grammar (focus on relating one structure to another). Halliday too: e.g. in Categories of the theory of grammar (1961). Then in a few years (starting in 1966) he produced the following five revolutionary ideas.
30 Innovation 1 In Categories (1961), Hallidays four main concepts were: unit, (element of) structure, class (of unit), and system. But in Some notes on deep grammar (1966/76: 93-4) he proposed a change in the balance of power - in the theory of language - and so also in descriptions of languages - by giving a central role to the concept of system - i.e. he made system more basic than structure, so treating paradigmatic relations (choice) as more fundamental than syntagmatic relations (sequence + constituency).
31 The grammar is based on the notion of choice. …. The speaker of a language …. can be regarded as carrying out… a number of distinct choices. …. The grammar of any language can be represented as a very large network of systems. (Halliday 1969/76:3) => Systemic Grammar (e.g. Hudson 1971)
32 Innovation 2 Halliday proposed that the system networks for TRANSITIVITY, MOOD, THEME etc should be seen as presenting choices between meanings (rather than choices between forms). Most famously in the New Horizons paper (Halliday 1970). HUGE INFLUENCE! The system of available options is the grammar of the language.... [these are] the meaning potential of language itself. (Halliday 1970: 142)
33 Also at many points in Explorations (1973), e.g. A functional theory of language is a theory about meanings, not about words or constructions. ….Where then do we find the functions differentiated in language? They are differentiated semantically, as different areas of what I call the meaning potential [my emphasis].* (Halliday 1971/73b:110) * i.e. in the system networks for TRANSITIVITY, MOOD, THEME, etc.
34 The result of adding Innovation 2 to Innovation 1: The concept of choice between meanings in system networks became the heart of the new model of language. => Systemic Functional Grammar (Halliday; Hasan, Martin, Matthiessen, Butt; Fawcett, Tucker, Tench, Huang, Castel; OToole, Kress, van Leeuwen, etc, etc.) Implemented computationally in 1980s and 1990s: (i)the Penman Project (ISI, U. of S. California) (ii)the COMMUNAL Project (CLU, Cardiff University) (iii)many others, borrowing from both. SFG became the dominant model in NLG in the 1990s.
35 Innovation 3 Halliday suggested that a clause is the simultaneous realization of several different strands of meaning (or metafunctions). FOUR to FIVE (and more) in the Sydney Grammar, i.e. in IFG
36 EIGHT strands of meaning in the Cardiff Grammar (Fawcett 2008a):
37 Innovation 4 Halliday (1961) suggested the possibility that the system network might one day be extended beyond the modelling of grammatical structures and items and also be used in the task of modelling a languages lexis (vocabulary) - so creating system networks for lexis, and so an integrated lexicogrammar. First implemented computationally in the COMMUNAL Project - and on a large scale (e.g. over 5000 terminal features in the cultural classification of thing network); See the survey of the literature in Tucker 1996, and the works of Tucker, Neale, Ball and myself.
38 Innovation 5 Halliday demonstrated, by providing a remarkably full description, that intonation can - and should - be included in the lexicogrammar of a language. (Halliday 1967, 1970) First implemented computationally in the COMMUNAL Project (Fawcett 1980) - and also punctuation.
39 It is these five concepts that constituted the core assumptions of the Cardiff Grammar in the 1970s. So the Cardiff Grammar is in a direct line of descent from Hallidays own specification of the nature of a Systemic Functional Grammar. But are they still the core assumptions of the Sydney Grammar? (It seems not, in one key respect..... Back to this later!)
40 Taken together, these five innovations have immeasurably broadened and deepened our view, as linguists, of both 1 the nature of language and 2 the task that linguists face in constructing models of it. Those who came into Linguistics after the 1970s may find it hard to understand how challenging to mainstream linguistics these proposals were. The combined effect was REVOLUTIONARY !
41 What was the effect of these ideas on those of us working in SFL at the time? They inspired us to adopt the challenging position that the system networks of TRANSITIVITY, MOOD, THEME and the like ARE the semantics of language. Our writings at the time demonstrate this clearly:
42 Berry, in her classic introduction to SFG, wrote: the terms in a system.... are distinct meanings within a common area of meaning [my emphasis]. (Berry 1975: 144) (Here a common area of meaning = a system or system network.)
43 And Kress (editor of Halliday 1976), states: the freeing of system from surface structure has a consequence that systems are now made up of terms which are semantic features [my emphasis]. (Kress 1976:35)
44 And I wrote: Meaning is concerned with the intra-linguistic level of semantics. …. A network may therefore be regarded as a summary of a complex area of meaning potential [my emphasis]. (Fawcett 1973/81:157). So all echo Halliday 1970 and 1971/3.
45, These quotations from (i) Halliday himself and (ii) others writing in the 1970s demonstrate that the Cardiff Grammar is based on the principles that established Systemic Functional Grammar. i.e. it is just as systemic and just as functional as Hallidays version (the Sydney Grammar). Halliday has described the Cardiff Grammar as: a closely related grammar [to that described in Halliday 1994], with some descriptive differences but based on the same systemic functional theory. (Halliday 1994:xii)
46 Hallidays 1970s proposals entail a model of language like this: It is implemented in the computer versions of both the Cardiff Grammar and the Sydney Grammar. To prove it, consider.....
47 Matthiessen & Bateman 1991:102
48 In a historical perspective, we should by now, over thirty years later, be well advanced in the long task of: 1revising and extending the descriptions of languages made prior to this still new view of language, 2testing and evaluating our revised descriptions, 3revising again (and sometimes rejecting) large and small parts of them, 4re-testing and re-evaluating them.... This has been the programme of research on the lexicogrammar since the 1970s of myself and, from 1987 onwards, of the whole Cardiff Grammar team. But has this been the goal of the Sydney grammarians? No! Why not? Well come to that...
49 In my view, the common ground between all SFGs should be the combination of Hallidays five great innovations of the 1970s. The big problem for the goal of a unified SFL: Halliday - followed by most (all?) other Sydney Grammarians – has modified one of the most central of the five innovatory proposals, without pointing out the enormous change to the model that this implies. (Back to this shortly.) So - When did the concept of a Cardiff Grammar arise?
50 In the early 1970s, my description of English differed from Hallidays only in relatively minor ways e.g. my version of the TRANSITIVITY network. Aside: this has been widely used; it is simpler, more comprehensive, and more user-friendly for text analysts (e.g. by Anke Schulz at Darmstadt). It was widely used in NLG and MT systems in the 1980s and 1990s (some still in use). Throughout the 1970s and 1980s there was no Cardiff Grammar, nor any thought of developing a separate version of the theory. So: What brought the Cardiff Grammar into existence?
Answer: the combination of three factors: 1The many improvements to what was to become the Cardiff Grammar, as a result of the eight factors about to be described 2The (relative) lack of developments in the Sydney Grammar (as opposed to the overall Sydney Model) 3The fact that the Sydney grammarians adopted hardly any of the improvements made in what was to develop into the Cardiff Grammar Well look first at the eight factors in 1 above (very briefly). 51
52 Eight developments in Descriptive Linguistics that have led to improvements in the Cardiff Grammar
53 For each factor, ask yourself: Would you expect this to lead to improvements in descriptions of languages?
54 1The growing emphasis in Linguistics in general on providing descriptions of languages in terms of meaning and function (in broad senses of both terms) i.e. meaning AS WELL AS form - but not replacing form. Note the influence on this change of Hallidays writings. In the CG : we made ALL the system networks semantic - e.g. MOOD - as Halliday had largely done for TRANSITIVITY.
55 2The enormous amount of work, using earlier SFL descriptions of English (and other languages) by university teachers, researchers and students - on the detailed analysis of very large quantities of text - and so in turn on extending and refining earlier descriptions. In the CG: (a) Fawcett & Perkins (late 1970s) child language corpus of 70,000 words (a rare syntactically analyzed corpus), and (b) three decades of supervising student projects on analyzing text - also Nottingham, Madrid, Liverpool etc. Most such work is not widely publicized.
56 3The great amount of traditional descriptive work by OTHER functionally-oriented scholars working in linguistics and pragmatics (some drawing on SFL ideas), e.g. West Coast functionalists, other functional theories (FG, RRG, Cognitive Grammar). In the CG: We have benefitted from: (a) Leechs meticulous descriptions of various aspects of English, (b) the great descriptions of English grammar of Quirk et al 1985 and Biber et al 1999, and Sinclairs COBUILD Dictionary, West Coast functionalists (Chafe, Prince).
57 4The enormous amount of work by formally-oriented linguists focussed primarily on syntax (e.g. those working in the Chomskyan paradigm). Much is too theory-dependent to be relevant outside their own theoretical frameworks. But some has helped us to identify the data of syntactic structures that the grammar must generate. In the CG: This work challenged us to develop new syntactic and semantic analyses within SFG for complex constructions whose traditional names reflect a transformational approach, e.g. raising, cleft, pseudo-cleft, extraposition and left-dislocation. See especially the definitive study of the experiential enhanced theme construction (aka it-cleft) by Huang (1996, 2002).
58 5The enormous quantities of new evidence now available to linguists through our ability to study patterns of language in very large corpora of text (stored in, and accessed through, computers). In the CG: as well as our own parsed corpus (see 2 above), we have benefited, in countless ways, from the British National Corpus and the Bank of English. Huang Guowen, Gordon Tucker, Fiona Ball, Amy Neale, Michael Day and Robin Fawcett have all made innovative contributions to the Cardiff Grammar as a direct result of work with these corpora.
59 6The growing appreciation of the central role of probabilities in modelling language, typically derived from large computer corpora. (Contrast the crude grammatical v. ungrammatical distinction still found in most formal grammars.) In the CG: we have accepted the general principle that probability is a more significant concept than grammaticality (and indeed that it includes it). So: (a) we put percentages (changeable) on features in system networks (apart from introductory mini-grammars), and (b) we use them in parsing (filling probabilities).
60 7The important lessons to be learnt from developing and formalizing very large SFGs in a computer model of language. Such models can be TESTED by running them, both in Natural Language Generation and in Natural Language Understanding (including parsing). In the CG: this factor has been a major aspect of the advances in the Cardiff Grammar. In NLG: probabilities on features in system networks In NLU: probabilities that a unit will fill an element probabilities that one element will be followed by another
61 8 The steadily growing recognition, in (a) NLG and (b) most theories of language that: No account of language and its use can be complete without being set within the framework of a cognitive-interactive model of communication. One of the great strengths of Sydney systemicists is their interest in society, culture, ideology, etc - the socio-cultural aspects of language and its use. But this gives us only half the cake. We also need to model the details of how we plan and execute texts, i.e. the cognitive-interactive aspects of language use (e.g. for understanding the meaning and use of concepts such as theme and new).
62 In the CG: The model that was to develop into the Cardiff Grammar has had a cognitive-interactive orientation from its origins in my early work (Fawcett 1973/81 and 1980). This has led to a series of major studies in COMMUNAL of what guides us when we choose between the features in system network, and so of the overall architecture of language and its use. For this, see my forthcoming book Alternative Architectures for Systemic Functional Linguistics (Fawcett forthcoming 2011a in your handout).
63 Summary In science, the models of the phenomenon being studied are constantly subject to testing, evaluation and change, then more testing, evaluation and change, and so on. Linguistics is - or should be - a science. It is the eight factors described here that have led, collectively, to the many advances in the Cardiff Grammar in the period 1870 to and that are STILL leading to improvements. Where can you see the results of these developments? In the 250 published books and articles (see the bibliography on the handout) - starting with Invitation to Systemic Functional Linguistics Note: the footnotes in Invitation give details of the reasons for the changes from Halliday.
64 We have seen the influences that helped to change the lexicogrammar in the Cardiff Model What has been happening in the framework of the Sydney Model ? Plenty, as we shall see - BUT … There have been almost NO CHANGES in Hallidays description of the lexicogrammar of English.
The question is: Why has there been this (relative) lack of developments in the Sydney Grammar (as opposed to the Sydney Model)? Part of the answer – but not all of it - can be found by looking at the work being carried out in the Sydney Model over this period. So we shall look at that – very briefly. 65
66 However, before we start focusing the differences between the work in the SM and in the CM, let me emphasize: 1 the immense significance of Hallidays five revolutionary innovations of the 1970s. This revolution left SFL both (i) very different from all other theories, and (ii) far in advance of them in its overall framework - both then and still today, over thirty years later (cp the limited scope of Cognitive Grammar, FG or RRG); 2the immense amount of common ground between all SFGs,which is largely based on the five revolutionary innovations.
67 The foci of work in the Sydney Grammar (a) Understanding and then trying out Hallidays other major innovative ideas of the 1970s: 1 his functionally based model of child language development (Halliday 1975), 2his explorations of the concept of language as social semiotic (Halliday 1973 and 1978), 3a picture of the development of the language of science, which has since grown into 4an interesting socio-cultural theory of the development of human language, 5 the concept of grammatical metaphor - and so the support that this gave to the idea from the 1970s that the model needs 6 a layer of system networks ABOVE those of TRANSITIVITY, MOOD, THEME etc, called variously socio-semantics, discourse semantics and more recently simply semantics.
68 Each of these six areas is sufficient to motivate a lifetime of research! In addition, especially pre-1985, but also in the period pre-1994: (b)Hallidays huge amount of work on preparing his Introduction to Functional Grammar (IFG) for publication in 1985 and So this would NOT have been a good time for him to be considering changes to the SG. But Sydney-based linguists have also been working on the following:
69 (c) Describing languages other than English, using as a template the IFG description of English (Matthiessen and colleagues) Very valuable. Complementary to work in the Cardiff Grammar? Yes, for now. But at some point we shall need to decide which of the two models is the better one (for this and other purposes). (d) Work on genre (Hasan, Martin, Ventola) (e) Developing the appraisal framework (Martin, White) Excellent summaries of the above work in Matthiessens 2007 survey of work in the IFG tradition in Continuing Discourse on Language.)
So we return to this question: Why has there been this (relative) lack of developments in the Sydney Grammar (in contrast with the many developments in the Sydney MODEL) in this period? Three possible reasons: 1Perhaps all the Sydney grammarians have been too busy with other aspects of the overall model of language and its uses to think about revising the lexicogrammar. 2They may think: The lexicogrammar is Hallidays field, so well leave it to him. 3Halliday was focussing on the book production stage of IFG. But there is fourth possible reason (a more theoretical one): 70
, In this fouth reason, the line of argument would run like this: 1In the Sydney architecture of language there is now, in principle, a new level of system networks that is called the semantics (even though there is relatively little descriptive work of any language at that level). 2 The system networks of TRANSITIVITY, MOOD, THEME etc are consequently no longer seen, as they were by most leading systemicists in the 1970s, as being at the level of meaning. 3They are therefore now assumed to be at the level of form. (This, of course, is they were in the 1960s, when the model was called Scale and Category Grammar and system was one of the four major categories at the level of form (i.e. BEFORE Halliday gave it the status of modelling the meaning potential of a language). 71
Consider the history of 4If this is so, there is no reason to undertake the vast task of reviewing all of Hallidays networks from the 1960s and early 1970s (as we have done in the CG), and revising them so they they become explicitly semantic networks of choices between meanings. 5So the original system networks of the 1960s and early 1970s, most of which existed BEFORE the five great innovations described earlier, are fine as they are. t72
Halliday seems to be tacitly endorsing this line of argument when he states (Halliday 1993: 4507 that Systemic work [in the Sydney framework] has tended to expand by moving into new spheres of activity, rather than by re-working earlier positions. In other words: Halliday is simply recording the facts that: when he made the system networks semantic in the 1970s, he did not then review the existing system networks, and when he later reassigned the networks to the level of form, he did not desemanticize the TRANSITIVITY network. NB He has chosen his words carefully; he does not say whether making no changes was right or wrong. 73
natory So: 1 The fact is that most of Hallidays system networks (except modality) have barely changed in the decades since the early 1970s. 2 This is in spite of the many advances in research methods described earlier, which should have enabled us all to spot weaknesses in our earlier models and then to revise them – as we have done continually in the Cardiff Grammar. 3However, many good scholars seem to be reasonably content to use Hallidays description of English for text description, etc. (Because it is the best descriptive framework that is widely available available?) 74
This intriguing question remains: Did Halliday really get (almost) everything right, back in the late 1960s and early 1970s? My answer: Halliday has produced an extraordinarily large number of genuinely insightful ideas, but no one - not even Michael Halliday – can get everything right the first time! Advances in Linguistics, as in any other science, proceed by a combination of 1innovatory ideas and 2 testing, revising, evaluating, re-testing, re-revising, etc. Hallidays role is clear and his reputation secure; he is the most innovatory - and so greatest – of living linguists. 75
76 So the major difference between the SG and the CG is the double claim that 1there is a higher system network, above the networks for TRANSITIVITY, MOOD, THEME, etc, and 2that having this additional level is the best way to explain the the set of phenomena that Halliday groups together under the umbrella heading of grammatical metaphor. The concept of grammatical metaphor was a valuable contribution to linguistics, in that it drew attention to an understudied set of phenomena that require: (a) modelling in the overall architecture of language and its use (a synchronic description) and, if possible, (b) an explanation of how they arose (a diachronic description). (This was part of Hallidays second set of major insights.)
77 The proposal is set out most fully in Halliday & Matthiessen (1999). Many questions about this proposal remain to be answered, e.g.: 1What would these new system networks be like? (So far we have only fragments of description in Halliday & Matthiessen 1999 and Hasans writings.) 2How do the higher networks predetermine choices in the lower one? 3 Is the enormously greater complexity of the new model justified? AND, most important of all…. 4Are there alternative ways of dealing with these problems? And, if so.… 5What are they?
78 So what is the status of the two levels of meaning proposal, from the viewpoint of linguistics as a science? An interesting hypothesis - but only that. So, if there are other possible solutions to the problem, we should, as good scientists, explore them. And there ARE other possible solutions. We have explored one set in the Cardiff Grammar, AND implemented many parts in the computer. See Fawcett forthcoming 2009 for descriptions of some cases in which a solution to the problem lies in a higher planning component.
79 An example of how to get rid of ONE of the problems to which grammatical metaphor is the supposed solution (from Invitation)
80 A semantic system network for MOOD (Figure 11.1)
81 A semantic system network for MOOD (Figure 11.2)
82 A summary of the problem 1In the 1970s, Hallidays writings seemed to support first one interpretation, then another, of the concept that system networks should model choices between meanings. (We should not blame him for this; it was an honest reflection of his current thinking at the time.) 2In the 1980s and 1990s he increasingly writes in a way that assumes (i) that there is a higher level of system networks, (ii) that this is the semantics, and (iii) that the networks of TRANSITIVITY, MOOD, THEME etc are therefore at the level of form. 3Most Sydney grammarians appear to accept the new two levels of meaning model described in Halliday & Matthiessen 1999 uncritically (but not Martin, for experiential meaning).
4In the Cardiff Grammar, we are testing exciting alternative ways of handling the grammatical metaphor phenomena - with good results. Conclusions 1Hallidays adoption of two levels of meaning model creates a major difference between the Sydney Grammar and the Cardiff Grammar. The Cardiff Grammar has just ONE level of meaning AND it can handle the grammatical metaphor phenomena. 2It will take time to resolve this issue. 83
An example: towards a coming together of views? Consider the history of the system network for TRANSITIVITY: In the early 1960s, Hallidays TRANSITIVITY network was at the level of form (concerning the number of Complements, etc). By the 1970s it had been fundamentally changed: it concerned Participant Roles, etc, and he explicitly describes it as semantic. In the 1990s the same system network is being treated as part of the lexicogrammar – all of which is now at the level of form. So is the TRANSITIVITY network part of semantics or part of form? 84
Hallidays two answers: 1In terms of the architecture of language, Halliday places it at the level of form. 2But in his 1994 Introduction to IFG he describes the lexicogrammar in IFG as having been pushed fairly far... in the direction of the semantics. (Halliday 1994: xix) Conclusions 1I think the second answer, based on the nitty gritty experience of descriptive work, is nearer the mark. 2This would mean that the positions of the SG and the CG are less far apart than is suggested by the widespread assumptions (in the SG world) about the status of the higher network for semantics (still under-developed). 85
86 Summary The Cardiff Model –Why did it come into existence? 1How I came into Linguistics and then into SFL, 2The group of researchers in CLU at Cardiff University, 3Hallidays five revolutionary insights of the early 1970s - a turning point in the history of Linguistics, 4the main difference between the Cardiff and the Sydney Grammars: the Cardiff Grammar has one level of system networks (at the level of meaning) the Sydney grammar has two levels of system networks (one at the level of meaning and one at the level of form).
87 Where do we go next? We have surveyed the the eight factors that led to developments in the Cardiff Grammar But not the developments themselves - a major task! What exactly were the developments? 1 one major one: confirmation of Hallidays five 1970s insights 2 the detailed proposals: (a) developments in lexicogrammar: (i) next session: a workshop on using the CG functional syntax for text analysis (so some of the developments!) (ii) Invitation and the other books and resources (b) developments in the overall architecture Alternative Architectures for SFL
88 We who work in the framework of the Cardiff Model accept most - but not all - of what we have inherited from our teacher, Michael Halliday. Some things we have replaced. This is because, in science, new evidence leads to new or modified descriptions, and sometimes to a modification of the theory. For the modifications that contribute to the theory of syntax that is required in a SFG for the twenty-first century, see Fawcett 2000/2010 – now out in paperback – so more affordable! Only one thing is certain – that our current models will be subject to further improvements in the future!