Category Archives: Interpersonal function

Tag Questions

Tag questions are concerned more with establishing interpersonal relations and suggesting whether some kind of response is required (or to close off any response), rather than requesting any specific information. Andersen (Andersen, Gisle. “Are tag questions questions? Evidence from spoken … Continue reading

Posted in Exchange, General SFL, Interpersonal function | Tagged , , , , , | 1 Comment

Polarity

Polarity is, the “choice between positive and negative” (H & M, p.116). The concept of polarity in general, and specifically the negative, doesn’t seem to get much attention or specific textbook treatment (except perhaps in old audio-lingual drills) but, as … Continue reading

Posted in Content: lexico-grammar, Interpersonal function | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

Modality – ability

One last category of modality is that of ability/potentiality, which may be expressed either subjective explicit (she can/can’t…) or objective explicit (she is/isn’t able to…). As H & M (p. 621) put it, ability “is on the fringe of the modality … Continue reading

Posted in Content: lexico-grammar, Interpersonal function | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Modality – modulation (inclination)

Modulation operates on proposals, where “the meaning of the positive and negative poles is prescribing and proscribing: positive ‘do it’ and negative ‘don’t do it’ [and] there are two kinds of intermediate possibility, in this case depending on the speech … Continue reading

Posted in Content: lexico-grammar, Interpersonal function | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

Modality – modulation (obligation)

Modulation operates on proposals, where “the meaning of the positive and negative poles is prescribing and proscribing: positive ‘do it’ and negative ‘don’t do it’ [and] there are two kinds of intermediate possibility, in this case depending on the speech … Continue reading

Posted in Content: lexico-grammar, Interpersonal function | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

Modality – Modalization (usuality)

Modalization operates on propositions, in the space between ‘It is…‘ and ‘It isn’t…‘. There are “two kinds of intermediate possibilities: (i) degrees of probability [and] (ii) degrees of usuality” (H & M, p.147). Usuality is “equivalent to ‘both yes and no’, … Continue reading

Posted in Content: lexico-grammar, Interpersonal function | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

Modality – modalization (probability)

Modalization operates on propositions, in the space between ‘It is…‘ and ‘It isn’t…‘. There are “two kinds of intermediate possibilities: (i) degrees of probability [and] (ii) degrees of usuality” (H & M, p.147). Probability is concerned with “‘either yes or no’, … Continue reading

Posted in Content: lexico-grammar, Interpersonal function | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Modality – system

Modality when presented to EFL learners is often limited to items such as should, could, must, etc. but the complete system network does extend beyond this, and I try to show students how the whole system interacts first rather than … Continue reading

Posted in Content: lexico-grammar, Interpersonal function | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Modality

Modality operates to “construe the region of uncertainty that lies between ‘yes’ and ‘no’” (H & M, p.147). In order to treat modality somewhat more systematically than is usually the case in EFL treatments, we need to go back to … Continue reading

Posted in Content: lexico-grammar, Interpersonal function | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

Vocatives and Expletives

Vocatives and expletives, such as What do you want, darling and God, that’s terrific are “features of dialogue, especially casual conversation where they often occur one after the other and together reinforce the ‘you-and-me’ dimension of the meaning” (H & M, … Continue reading

Posted in Content: lexico-grammar, Interpersonal function | Tagged | Leave a comment