Tuesday, 21 February 2012

Deicticity And Thematicity

Halliday & Matthiessen (2004: 86-7):
The WH- element in turn is part of a wider set embracing both WH- and TH- forms, which taken together fulfil a deictic or ‘pointing out’ function …
The generalisation we can make here is that all deictic elements are characteristically thematic …

The Commonality Of ‘Interrogative’ And ‘Relative’

Halliday & Matthiessen (2004: 86):
These two values, interrogative and relative, are themselves related at a deeper level, through the general sense of ‘identity to be retrieved from elsewhere’; the ‘indefinite’ ones illustrate a kind of transition between the two …
The category of WH- element opens up this semantic space, of an identity that is being established by interrogation, perhaps with an element of challenge or disbelief; or put aside as irrelevant; or established relative to some other entity.

The Twofold Thematic Value Of WH- Relatives

Halliday & Matthiessen (2004: 85):
Like WH- interrogatives, WH- relatives are also characteristically thematic — the group or phrase in which they occur is the unmarked Theme of a relative clause; and similarly they combine topical with a non-topical function, in this case textual …

The Twofold Thematic Value Of WH- Interrogatives

Halliday & Matthiessen (2004: 85):
… they are at the same time both interpersonal and topical — interpersonal because they construe the mood, topical because they represent participant or circumstance.