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Describing Language: Form and Function

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How does one's grammar depend on one's conception of language? In systemic functional linguistics, language is viewed as a meaning potential, thus embracing the view, now supported by contemporary theories of the evolution of human consciousness, that language has evolved in the living of life in society. Using the theoretical framework of systemic functional linguistics, the chapters of this book explore the nature of language, the relations of meaning and society, of form and meaning, and of grammar and lexis. Halliday has referred to the level of lexicogrammar as the powerhouse of language: this is where the resource for creating linguistic meaning resides. But language as resource cannot be adequately described as a set of syntagmatic structures; instead, the primary focus must be on the paradigmatic axis, which after all furnishes the principle for the actualisation of syntagms. Accordingly, aspects of Urdu and English semantics, grammar and lexis are presented here in terms of systemic options, realised as structures.

Published: Jan 30, 2019


Section Chapter Authors
Acknowledgements Jonathan J. Webster, Carmel Cloran
Editor's Preface Jonathan J. Webster
Foreword Carmel Cloran
I: On Language and Linguistics
Chapter 1: What Kind of Resource is Language? [1984] Ruqaiya Hasan
Chapter 2: Directions from Structuralism [1987] Ruqaiya Hasan
Chapter 3: Linguistic Sign and the Science of Linguistics [2014] Ruqaiya Hasan†
Chapter 4: A View of Pragmatics in a Social Semiotic Perspective [2012] Ruqaiya Hasan†
Chapter 5: Choice, System and Realization: Describing Language as Meaning Potential [2013] Ruqaiya Hasan†
II: Lexicogrammatical Descriptions
Chapter 6: The Grammarian's Dream: Lexis as Most Delicate Grammar [1987] Ruqaiya Hasan
Chapter 7: Lending and Borrowing: From Grammar to Lexis [1985] Ruqaiya Hasan
III: On the Relations of Form and Meaning
Chapter 8: Syntax and Semantics [1971] Ruqaiya Hasan
Chapter 9. The Meaning of 'Not' is not in 'Not' [2011] Ruqaiya Hasan†
IV: Brief Excursions into Urdu Grammar
Chapter 10: Some Clause Types in Urdu Ruqaiya Hasan
Chapter 11: The Verb 'Be' in Urdu [1970] Ruqaiya Hasan
End Matter
Bibliography Ruqaiya Hasan†
Index Ruqaiya Hasan†

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