Tuesday, 14 February 2017

David Rose Confused By Mixed Genres

So where does our model afford ‘mixing’ 
Between features in systems? That would produce a new valeur, so a different feature

Between features and structures in axis? Again, a different (mixed?) structure realises a different feature
Between systems at different strata? OK, here we have lots of variation (grammatical metaphor is one example among many)
Here’s an advantage of modelling context as a stratified semiotic 
Genre is a semiotic system, whose features are realised axially by various structural configurations (e.g. staging)
Change the structural configuration sufficiently and we have a different valeur in the system, i.e. a different genre
But one generic structure can be realised interstratally by many variations in register

Again, field, tenor and mode are semiotic systems, with similar sets of constraints and potential for variation

And again their structures can be realised interstratally in variable ways, including modalities other than language

Blogger Comments:

[1] The notion of 'mixing' here refers to instances that 'mix genres'.  On the SFL model, this means texts that can be ascribed to more than one text type.  As explained in the previous post, text types vary by the frequency of feature selections, and so text types are more like fuzzy sets than discrete categories, with texts showing degrees of membership to text types.

[2] The fundamental disadvantages of modelling context as stratified genre and register are:
  • genre and register are varieties of language, not systems of context;
  • context is the culture as semiotic, not varieties of language;
  • genre and register are not different levels of symbolic abstraction (strata), but different angles on a point of variation on the cline of instantiation;
  • strata are systems (semantics, lexicogrammar, phonology), not varieties;
  • a text is an instance of language, not an instance of context — whether stratified or not.  
For more detailed argumentation, see here, here, or here.

[3] The genre "systems" in Martin (1992) and Martin & Rose (2008) are not systems of feature options, but genre taxonomies of types, and do not include realisation statements.  From the perspective of SFL theory, the stages of genre are semantic structures varying according to text type; see Hasan (1985: 64-9) on 'generic structure potentials'.

[4] This confuses different options in the systems of field, tenor and mode with different variants — different configurations of field, tenor and mode — and misrepresents these contextual systems as diatypic varieties of language.  See Hasan (1985: 55ff) on contextual configurations.

[5] No systems of field, tenor or mode provide realisation statements specifying syntagmatic structures.  The realisation of such structures, in terms of stratification, would be semantic structures.