Accession Number : AD0646663

Title :   SOME ASPECTS OF THE THEMATIC ORGANIZATION OF THE ENGLISH CLAUSE,

Corporate Author : RAND CORP SANTA MONICA CALIF

Personal Author(s) : Halliday,M. A. K.

Report Date : JAN 1967

Pagination or Media Count : 28

Abstract : An analysis is presented of the English clause from the point of view of its structure as a message: its thematic organization. The study is concerned with spoken English only. Recorded conversations were analyzed by rhythm, stress, and tonality, as well as by word order, to show the distinct patterns underlying a number of apparently unrelated contrasts in English grammar. The three principal systems of structuring communication are information, thematization, and identification. Each assigns a structure to the clause in terms of 'given--new' (information), 'theme--non-theme' (thematization), and 'known--unknown' (identification). Information clauses distinguish between given and new phonologically, by the tone pattern. Thematic clauses distinguish between theme and rheme (non-theme) by the sequencing of elements. Identification clauses relate a known to an unknown by stress pattern. Examination of the thematic patterns of the clause not only reveals the resources available to the speaker for the structuring of information, but can also provide further insights into the better-known aspects of English syntax. (Author)

Descriptors :   (*ENGLISH LANGUAGE, *SYNTAX), LINGUISTICS, GRAMMARS, SPEECH

Subject Categories : Linguistics

Distribution Statement : APPROVED FOR PUBLIC RELEASE