New Book on the Article

Stirling Bartholomew
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Re: New Book on the Article

Post by Stirling Bartholomew » November 13th, 2017, 12:44 pm

Somewhat ironic that in chapter two, Peters launches his argument with an SFL analysis of English wh and th words. I thought we were trying to get away from talking about English.
C. Stirling Bartholomew

Matthew Longhorn
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Re: New Book on the Article

Post by Matthew Longhorn » November 13th, 2017, 12:56 pm

It has been a while since I read it, 3 or more months, but I think that he needed to do that. My reading of his thesis is arguing that we have incorrectly associated the meaning of the article in Greek with the meaning of the th words in English. In order to show how they correspond more closely to the wh word groups I think he is trying to help people understand what he means by that.
Not trying to be his apologist, and am clearly reading outside of my skill level - sorry if I am misreading.

Peter Streitenberger
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Re: New Book on the Article

Post by Peter Streitenberger » November 13th, 2017, 9:25 pm

Jonathan Robie wrote:
October 13th, 2015, 4:52 pm
A little more on the article with proper names, from page 295:
The best way to illustrate this usage is to analyze a substantial portion of discourse in which the grounding of participants may be illustrated. First, consider a portion of the transfiguration of Jesus in Matt 17:1-4:

Καὶ μεθ’ ἡμέρας ἓξ παραλαμβάνει ὁ Ἰησοῦς τὸν Πέτρον καὶ Ἰάκωβον καὶ Ἰωάννην τὸν ἀδελφὸν αὐτοῦ, καὶ ἀναφέρει αὐτοὺς εἰς ὄρος ὑψηλὸν κατ’ ἰδίαν. καὶ μετεμορφώθη ἔμπροσθεν αὐτῶν, καὶ ἔλαμψεν τὸ πρόσωπον αὐτοῦ ὡς ὁ ἥλιος, τὰ δὲ ἱμάτια αὐτοῦ ἐγένετο λευκὰ ὡς τὸ φῶς. καὶ ἰδοὺ ὤφθη αὐτοῖς Μωϋσῆς καὶ Ἠλίας συλλαλοῦντες μετ’ αὐτοῦ. ἀποκριθεὶς δὲ ὁ Πέτρος εἶπεν τῷ Ἰησοῦ· Κύριε, καλόν ἐστιν ἡμᾶς ὧδε εἶναι· εἰ θέλεις, ποιήσω ὧδε τρεῖς σκηνάς, σοὶ μίαν καὶ Μωϋσεῖ μίαν καὶ Ἠλίᾳ μίαν.

And after six days Jesus took Peter and James and John his brother and led them into a high mountain alone. And he was transformed in front of them, and his face shone like the sun, and his garments become bright as light. And behold, they saw Moses and Elijah speaking with him! Then Peter said to Jesus, "Lord, it is good for us to be here. If you want, I will make three tents here, one for you, one for Moses, and one for Elijah."

In this instance, the grounding of the participants is relatively easy to explain. Only Jesus and Peter are identified with the article. They are the most salient participants; they essentially stand at the front of the stage. In this instance, they are also the only two who speak. The other participants, James, John, Moses, and Elijah, are part of the grounding of the scene. Their function is to provide the backdrop to Jesus and Peter and set the scene for their interaction.
I need help parsing this from some of you with more background in Discourse Analysis. I would have thought that Moses and Elijah are more than just a backdrop, even though they don't say anything.
καὶ ἰδοὺ ὤφθη αὐτοῖς Μωϋσῆς καὶ Ἠλίας συλλαλοῦντες μετ’ αὐτοῦ.
Is that really just backdrop? If so, what does backdrop mean in this context? Do you buy his analysis of this passage?
Dear Jonathan, at least one thinking clearly! I completely agree with your finding, that the opposite of the claim of the author of the new "Grammar on the article" seems to assume is true: "And behold, they saw Moses and Elijah speaking with him!" - Alone the attention getter "behold" brings Moses and Elijah in the first row or highlights them or sets the focus on them. The attention is on them, leaving other participants behind, at a second or third row. Peter P.S. As someone provided a link, I could scroll through the paper a bit, again nothing good from the Porter school. No further interest.

Stirling Bartholomew
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Re: New Book on the Article

Post by Stirling Bartholomew » November 14th, 2017, 3:46 pm

Matthew Longhorn wrote:
November 13th, 2017, 12:56 pm
It has been a while since I read it, 3 or more months, but I think that he needed to do that. My reading of his thesis is arguing that we have incorrectly associated the meaning of the article in Greek with the meaning of the th words in English. In order to show how they correspond more closely to the wh word groups I think he is trying to help people understand what he means by that.
Not trying to be his apologist, and am clearly reading outside of my skill level - sorry if I am misreading.
Matthew,

I'm working my way through chapter three. Peters presents an extensive analysis of relative clauses comparing them to articular participle clauses and assigning functional categories (defining, restriction, extension, ...) borrowed from Halliday’s analysis of the English language.

On page 120, the first example of extension illustrates a significant issue with Halliday's functional categories when applied to Koine Greek. The following is an imperfect citation from Peters, for more precision reference the PDF p120.
2.b.l. Extending Relative Clauses. The challenge of identifying the category of extension is well illustrated in 1 John 3:24:

1John 3:24b-d καὶ ἐν τούτῳ γινώσκομεν ὅτι μένει ἐν ἡμῖν, ἐκ τοῦ πνεύματος οὗ ἡμῖν ἔδωκεν.
{missing graphic syntax analysis}

And by this we know that he remains in us, from the spirit which he gave to us.

At first glance, this instance appears to fit the criteria of extension: there is an embedded relative clause that employs a relative pronoun in the genitive case. However, in this instance, the function of the genitive case may be explained apart from simple possession. On the one hand, the relative pronoun may be in the genitive case due to attraction.25 On the other hand, it may be employed to indicate the origin or source of the head term, τοῦ πνεύματος . 26 Thus, while structurally this example fits the pattern outlined above, it varies from the definition laid out by Halliday. This does not render Halliday's category useless, however. We may employ it as a launching point for a categorization that is more organic to the Greek language. As noted above, the basic function of the Greek genitive case is that of restriction. 27 Based on this, it is possible to still view the relative clause as something that adds to the head term by way of extension, but it is the addition of a restriction. Another possible course would be to opt out of Halliday's subcategory altogether in favor of a new sub-category: that of restriction instead of extension. 28

25 Brown, The Epistles ofJohn, 466; Smalley, 1,2,3 John, 212; Culy, 1,11,111 John, 99.
26 Porter, Idioms, 93.
27 Porter, Idioms, 92.
28 This, of course, would result in the loss of the convenient alliteration of elaboration, extension, and enhancement.
29 Porter, Idioms, 97.
I haven't spent years on my life studying Halliday's functional analysis of English. I read Halliday and Hasan (1976) Cohesion in English and a famous paper he wrote in 1967 Notes on Transitivity. I've also read a number of monographs published in the last 30 years by advocates of SFL. I continue to find difficulties applying this framework to Ancient Greek. In chapter three of this monograph I find it difficult to justify the distinctions in the functional categories that Peters applies to articulate participle clauses.
C. Stirling Bartholomew

Jonathan Robie
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Re: New Book on the Article

Post by Jonathan Robie » November 14th, 2017, 4:52 pm

Peter Streitenberger wrote:
November 13th, 2017, 9:25 pm
... , again nothing good from the Porter school.
Don't paint with too broad a brush. Francis Pang's work seems to be well received by many people here, for instance.
ἐξίσταντο δὲ πάντες καὶ διηποροῦντο, ἄλλος πρὸς ἄλλον λέγοντες, τί θέλει τοῦτο εἶναι;
http://jonathanrobie.biblicalhumanities.org/

Peter Streitenberger
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Re: New Book on the Article

Post by Peter Streitenberger » November 14th, 2017, 5:41 pm

Hope you are right, and if exceptions have arrived, I am open to hear more. At least I have not read sound linguistics from Porter, Campbell, Matthewson and now from what I scanned from Peters. Always disappointed. I would agree with the statement on it by Dan Wallace, after I could find his article. But I did not read all the dissertation, only about 20-30 minutes. So if you could recommend anything, I am very interested. Please say some words, I have no clue what book came into your mind. Thx. P.

P.S. Addition: Found that: https://domainthirtythree.com/2017/06/2 ... rill-2016/ - quote: "the perfective and imperfective opposition". As I dont buy the whole story of this assumed major feature of the binary perfective vs. imperfective opposition - I think I am not interested, in case you refer to this work: reminds me too much of Porter, Campbell and seems to be the same fairy tale. That is what I call bad linguistics, leading folks astray in a sound understanding of language. Of much more benefit is the tempus theory of Reichenbach and others. Then if Brill prints that in exact that series it hardly can be sound, as it should be a contraposition to the other writers and of course not really to expect.

Stephen Carlson
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Re: New Book on the Article

Post by Stephen Carlson » November 14th, 2017, 7:23 pm

Jonathan Robie wrote:
November 14th, 2017, 4:52 pm
Peter Streitenberger wrote:
November 13th, 2017, 9:25 pm
... , again nothing good from the Porter school.
Don't paint with too broad a brush. Francis Pang's work seems to be well received by many people here, for instance.
Pang's literature review was well-received for reading and engaging broadly into the larger linguistics literature (which rather strikes me as a back-handed compliment), but I still have misgivings about his statistical set-up and the conclusions that follow. Basically, I think he chose an underpowered statistic and so I'm not surprised that he couldn't find significant relationship between telicity and perfectivity. As his conclusion goes against the general consensus outside of "the Porter school," I doubt it will make much of an impact until reproduced by a more sophisticated corpus analysis.
Stephen C. Carlson, Ph.D.
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Stirling Bartholomew
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Re: New Book on the Article

Post by Stirling Bartholomew » November 14th, 2017, 8:47 pm

Stephen Carlson wrote:
November 14th, 2017, 7:23 pm
I'm not surprised that he couldn't find significant relationship between telicity and perfectivity.

The idea that one could perform a statistical measurement of anything as vague and nebulous as telicity and perfectivity strikes me as mildly absurd. Nevertheless, I am deriving benefit from reading Peters' dissertation, having temporarily adopted Dr. Jim West's motto, read everything. I think it's worth reading.
C. Stirling Bartholomew

Stephen Carlson
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Re: New Book on the Article

Post by Stephen Carlson » November 14th, 2017, 9:21 pm

Stirling Bartholomew wrote:
November 14th, 2017, 8:47 pm
The idea that one could perform a statistical measurement of anything as vague and nebulous as telicity and perfectivity strikes me as mildly absurd.
I dunno. If you can define the terms fairly rigorously, which I think you can, then you can measure their association within a corpus. After all, there are 80+ different statistical measures to chose from!
Stephen C. Carlson, Ph.D.
Melbourne, Australia

Stirling Bartholomew
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Re: New Book on the Article

Post by Stirling Bartholomew » November 16th, 2017, 2:29 pm

Stephen Carlson wrote:
November 14th, 2017, 9:21 pm
Stirling Bartholomew wrote:
November 14th, 2017, 8:47 pm
The idea that one could perform a statistical measurement of anything as vague and nebulous as telicity and perfectivity strikes me as mildly absurd.
I dunno. If you can define the terms fairly rigorously, which I think you can, then you can measure their association within a corpus. After all, there are 80+ different statistical measures to chose from!
Your qualification "If you can define the terms fairly rigorously ..." goes to the heart of the matter. I would add one further restriction: The rigorously defined terminology must be a matter of consensus among the participants in the discussion. This is more difficult to achieve.
C. Stirling Bartholomew

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