On Explanation in Systemic Functional Theory
Keywords:description, explanation, metafunction, systemic functional theory
Professor Halliday raises 13 representative questions for thinking about the English language and the answers are given by reference to the Systemic Functional Theory, in particular the three metafunctions: questions 1–5 and 12 are concerned with the Interpersonal while 3–5 are also textual; 6–10 involve the Textual, among which 6–8 refer to both thematization and information while 9–10 are mainly informational: the thematic principle interpret the initial status of the clause while the informational whether the end weight importance (9) or Given for reference (10); questions 11–13 deal with verbs in their respective phase, modality and polarity. Such a description and interpretation makes one rethink about English why it has evolved the way it has by what it looks like.
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