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Challenging Boundaries in Linguistics

Systemic Functional Perspectives


Edited By Stella Neumann, Rebekah Wegener, Jennifer Fest, Paula Niemietz and Nicole Hützen

Linguistics, like any discipline, is full of boundaries. However, in nature, as Ruqaiya Hasan points out, there are no clear cut boundaries. The participants of the 42nd International Systemic Functional Congress held at RWTH Aachen University addressed and challenged the notion of boundaries in linguistics in many creative ways. Twenty-one of the papers presented at the congress are collated in this volume. The six sections cover topics that challenge theoretical notions and stances, and explore historical, interpersonal and lexicogrammatical boundaries as well as those between languages and in language development. The volume presents a state of the art overview of systemic functional linguistic theorising with extensions into other theoretical frameworks.

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Operationalizing Appraisal multilingually (Marilena Di Bari)


Marilena Di BariUniversity of

Operationalizing Appraisal multilingually

Abstract: This paper presents the comparable SentiML corpus in English, Italian and Russian, annotated with systemic concepts. The paper focuses on the analysis of the translation strategies and the appraisal types (affect, judgement, appreciation) retrieved in the different text types the corpus consists of, namely political speeches, news and TED talks.

1 Introduction

The study of evaluative language is fascinating and important because of the multiple functions that evaluation has: (i) constructing and maintaining relations between the speaker/writer and the hearer/reader, (ii) reflecting the systems of values of the speaker and their community, and (iii) organizing the discourse (Hunston and Thompson 2000). In systemic functional linguistics, the Appraisal Framework (Martin and White 2005) is the resource specifically concerned with the language of evaluation, attitude and emotion.

Despite being already popular, in the last few years the study of evaluative language has attracted even more interest because of the advances in its automatic identification and classification, a field known as Sentiment Analysis (Liu 2012).

The link between manual and automatic analysis is thus quite strong, since Sentiment Analysis “adds greatly to our understanding of what is important for evaluative meaning” (Hunston and Thompson 2000) and, on the other hand, it needs to rely on a structured and functional study of the language rather than treating language simply as a ‘bag of words’ (Harris 1954). Among the ways in which such...

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