ENGL 319 - week 9

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					Appraisal: Graduation &
    Fundamentals of Media
          Week 9
        Appraisal System
These key appraisal systems are outlined
in Figure 1. In order to more accurately
reflect the ways in which people combine
different kinds of engagement, attitude and
graduation in discourse, the network now
contains three simultaneous systems for
these regions of appraisal. That is we can
choose from all of them at the same time.
   Figure 1: Appraisal systems – an overview

                         heterogloss           modality…


appraisal   attitude     judgement…


            graduation               lower

                         focus…      sharpen

Affect, Judgement and Appreciation are all gradable
We can grade them up or down.
When we talk about grading up and down in terms of
  intensity we refer to this as FORCE, e.g.:
  extremely intelligent
  really intelligent
  quite intelligent
  fairly intelligent
  somewhat intelligent
Many intensifiers involve attitude, e.g. an amazingly
 good movie
And very often we rely on amplified vocabulary,
  pleased, delighted, ecstatic
  good, excellent, outstanding

There is another kind of Graduation and that is by
Here we sharpen or blur the focus of something,
  She was exactly right          an apology of sorts
  He is a real gentleman
Graduation operates across two axes of scalability –
that of grading according to intensity or amount
(Force) and that of grading according to the
preciseness by which category boundaries are drawn
     Force: grading up and down in terms of
     intensity e.g.:
     extremely handsome
     really handsome
     quite handsome
     fairly handsome
     somewhat handsome

     Focus: blurring or sharpening the focus of
     the semantic categorisations
     via locutions such as true, real, genuine, kind of,
     sort of, effectively etc.
     e.g. He is a true friend; We will be there at 5

 Values by which:
 (1) Force: speakers raise or lower the
  interpersonal impact, force or volume of their
  utterances, and;
 (2) Focus: by which they blur or sharpen the
  focus of their semantic categorisations.
 (FORCE ) slightly, somewhat, very,
 (FOCUS) I was feeling kind of woozy; a true
  friend, pure folly
    Network of GRADUATION (Hood 2004)
                                                                                 (attribute)         (more action-oriented)

                                                            INTENSIFICATION      (process)         (look at vs explore)
                                                                                 (proposal)       (must, need to)

                                                                                  amount       (few studies)
                                                                                   extent                        space

GRADUATIO                                                                                        distance
N                                                                                                                  space
                                                                                  frequency          (frequently found)

                                                           SPECIFICITY       authenticity            (‘ real research’)

                                         FOCUS                               particularity
                                                                                               (in particular)

                                                                             completion         (try to)
                                                                             realisation        (suggest; probably show;
Hood, S. 2004. ‘Managing attitude in undergraduate academic writing:
a focus on the introductions to research reports’. In Ravelli, L & Ellis,R   (proposition)      sometimes)
(eds) Analysing academic writing: Contextualised frameworks.
London: Continuum, 24-44.
Underline graduation in the examples below.

Golden Eye
   Everyone has their favourite Bond, but Pierce Brosnan is
   considered by many fans to be the best 007 since Sean Connery.
   Golden Eye is Brosnan’s first outing with a licence to kill and he is
   as suave and witty as audiences have come to expect from the
   super-spy. The plot suffers from the producer’s attempt to update
   the franchise by having a female M (Judi Dench) make fun of Bond
   for being a ‘sexist dinosaur’. Nevertheless it is jolly good fun and
   true to the formula: locations on three continents, lethal gadgets,
   megalomaniacal baddies and men in dinner jackets (Brosnan’s
   contract forbids him wearing a dinner jacket in any other role).
   There are some fabulous female characters, including a terrific
   performance by Dench and Fanke Janssen as Xenia Onatopp, the
   gorgeous villain who crushes men between her legs. Worth staying
   home for.
Please find out the Attitude resources and
Graduation resources in the text below:

[ABC radio interview]


There is an argument, though, is there, the banks have been a bit
greedy I mean, the profits are high and good on them, they're entitled
to have high profits, but at the same time the fees are bordering the
unreasonable now.


Well, there's a lot of anger about many of the fees and this is really
why, I say again, the more competition we can have the better. And
there's no doubt that home loan interest rates, in particular, are lower
now because of competition.
     Appraisal systems – an overview
                          heterogloss           modality…


appraisal    attitude     judgement…


             graduation             lower

                          focus…    sharpen


                                            (Martin & Rose 2003)
 Engagement: the resources of intersubjective

• Another area of Appraisal system
  –   will not cover in depth today
  –   see - Martin and White, 2005: Ch 3 & 4
  –   Martin and Rose 2003
  –   Appraisal website
• The source of dialogistic positioning
  – Monoglossic (the banks have been greedy-no
    recognition of dialogistic alternatives )
  – Heteroglossic (everyone knows the banks are greedy
    / the banks have not been greedy)
  We call this area of theory ENGAGMENT.
Martin and White (2005:100)
               A dialogic perspective

All verbal communication, whether written or spoken, is
‘dialogic’ in that to speak or write is always to reveal the
influence of, refer to, or to take up in some way, what
has been said/written before, and simultaneously to
anticipate the response of actual, potential or imagined

Bakhtin observes that all utterances exist…

‘…against a backdrop of other concrete utterances on
the same theme, a background made up of contradictory
opinions, points of view and value judgements…pregnant
with responses and objections’ (Bakhtin 1981:281)
Monoglossic VS Heteroglossic

Monoglossic: the speaker/writer presents the current
proposition as one which has no dialogistic alternatives
which need to be recognised, or engaged with, in the
current communicative context

Heteroglossic: all locutions which function in this way to
recognise that the text’s communicative backdrop is a
diverse one

i.e. Monoglossic makes no reference to other voices and
viewpoints while heteroglossic invokes or allows
dialogistic alternatives
 The framework of Engagement then, is directed towards
 providing a systemic account of how such positioning
 are achieved linguistically. It provides the means to
 characterize a speaker/writer’s interpersonal style and
 their rhetorical strategies according to what sort of
 heteroglossic backdrop of other voices and alternative
 viewpoints they construct for their text and according to
 the way in which they engage with that backdrop.

Note: the framework’s orientation is towards meanings in
context and towards rhetorical effects, rather than towards
grammatical forms

• Resources for positioning the speaker's/author's voice
  with respect to the various propositions and proposals
  conveyed by a text; meanings by which speakers either
  acknowledge or ignore the diversity of view-points put at
  risk by their utterances and negotiate an interpersonal
  space for their own positions within that diversity.

• Engagement resources provide the means by which
  speakers/writers adjust and negotiate the arguability of
  their propositions and proposals
        Engagement: Modality
• Wordings by which the authorial voice indicates that its
  position is but one of a number of possible positions and
  thereby, to greater or lesser degees, makes dialogic
  space for those possibilities.

• This is a semantic domain which has traditionally be
  covered in the literature under the headings of
  ‘epistemic modality’ and ‘evidentiality’

• Speaker/writer makes assessments of likelihood via:
  -Modal auxiliaries     may, might, could, must etc
  -Modal adjuncts        perhaps, probably, definitely etc
  -Modal attributes      it’s possible that…it’s likely
  -Circumstances         in my view…
  -Certain mental verbs I suspect that, He believes, I
• Modality is used throughout both subjective and
   explicit subjective     we suppose
   implicit subjective     might, would
   implicit objective      perhaps, often
   explicit objective      little chance, no hope
   modalized clause        if
• Modality – develops the heteroglossia of a text by
  implicitly acknowledging alternative voices.
• Writers modalize not because they are unsure of what
  they are saying but to acknowledge alternative points of
  view (see Martin and White, 2005)
Martin, J. R. and White, P. R. R. (2005) The Language of Evaluation: Appraisal
                              in English. Palgrave
Projection is used throughout the editorial
• The Macau police found themselves in a Keystone Cops
  episode, arresting and detaining seven “seven suspected
  Pakistani terrorists”.
• though the men turned out to be tourists, a word which is
  spelled somewhat like terrorists, and we suppose to some
  people, just as frightening.
• Meanwhile (and we’re not making this up), two Indian
  national on a flight from Singapore to Hong Kong were
  detained at Changi Airport
• an American passenger said he heard
• one of the men calling himself a “Bosnian terrorist”
• Similarly, there have already been reports of taxis putting
  up “out of service” signs
Formulations which disassociate the
proposition from the text’s internal
authorial voice by attributing it to some
external sources
– acknowledging alternative sources
– some expanding the range of voices
– some restricting us to one particular viewpoint,
  e.g. as something we know something all the
  pundits are saying
• From the dialogistic perspective, negation
  is a resource for introducing the alternative
  positive position into the dialogue, and
  hence acknowledging it, so as to reject it.
• Here polarity is used to deny alternative
• I am honest vs I am not lying
     the polls aren’t going our way
     we are not all of one religion
     we are not making this up
• Formulations which represent the current
  proposition as replacing or supplanting,
  and thereby ‘countering’, a proposition
  which would have been expected in its
     • E.g. Even though we are getting divorce, Bruce
       and I are still best friends
     • You are a nice guy/girl, but I don’t think it’s
       gonna work.
     • While that grief is deeply understood…
The use of conjunctions to position
 alternative perspectives, while, though,
 in fact, anyway, but, at least etc.

• Summing up then, what we have are three main
  appraisal systems – attitude, graduation and
• Attitude comprises affect, judgement and appreciation –
  our three major regions of feeling.
• Graduation covers grading, including force and focus;
  force involves the choice to raise or lower the intensity of
  gradable items, focus the option of sharpening or
  softening an experiential boundary.
• Engagement covers resources that introduce additional
  voices into a discourse, via projection, modalisation or
  concession; the key choice here is one voice (monogloss)
  or more than one voice (heterogloss). Technically
  sourcing resources are referred to as engagement.

We’ve been looking at how feelings, solidarity, alignment
are established through written text. Feelings are always
about something – interpersonal attitudes to ideational

– The rhetorical power of language to position the reader/listener
– How we share viewpoints, feelings, reality in order to belong
– Texts have texture – they map logic onto the rhetoric
There is a need to understand ideational
meaning in relation to interpersonal meaning
Plus need to understand ideational and
interpersonal meaning to the way a text is
structured / organised – i.e. textual meaning
Understand this triangulation in relation to the
social system – ideology



           Textual                Interpersonal
                  Prosody and genre

Appraisal resources - establish the tone or mood of a passage
    – choices resonate with one another from one moment to another as a
      text unfolds.
    – thus ‘prosodic’
    – a prosody of attitude running through the text that swells and diminishes,
      in the manner of a musical prosody
• prosodic pattern of appraisal - constructs the ‘stance’ or ‘voice’ of the
• this stance or voice defines the kind of community that is being set
  up around shared values
    – these stances are often discussed as ranging along a scale - from more
      objective to more subjective. (Martin and Rose, 2003:54)
• ‘objectivity’
    – involves– basically as little attitude and graduation as possible.
    – thought of this as a kind of faceless stance. “But the absence of
      feelings, intensification and alternative voices is itself a face – a cool
      excluding one perhaps, but it is a face. “(Martin and Rose, 2003:55)
 Questions to ask yourself when analysing the Attitude
                       in a text:

Look at what kind of Attitude occurs in a text:
1. Is it mainly Affect? or Judgement? or
   Appreciation? (and you may also consider sub-
   categories of these)
2. Is it mainly positive or negative?
3. Why? How does this related to the kind of text it
   is (genre? Or to the Register of the text?
4. Look at where the Attitude occurs in a text.
5. Do you get accumulations of Attitude at certain
   stages in a text? Which stage? Why?

“unfolds dynamically to engage us, to get us on
  side – not with one appeal, but through a
  spectrum of manoeuvres that work
  themselves out phase by phase.”
                            (Martin and Rose, 2003:56)
            Task: Central Station
Central Station **** (out of 5) (1998)
Cast: Fernanda Montenegro, Vinicius de Oliveira, Marilia Pera, Soia Lira Directed by
Walter Salles

Here's a real hidden gem for people looking for something different but wonderful.
This tells the tale of Dora, an aging and lonely retired schoolteacher who makes ends
meet by writing letters for illiterate Brazilians in a train station. One day a woman and
her young boy want to write the boy's estranged father, whom the boy wants to meet
in the worst way. A fateful accident kills the boy's mother, leaving the boy a virtual
orphan since he doesn't know his father. Dora takes the boy in but sells custody to a
local businessman from the train station, but her conscience gets the better of her
when she discovers the man is in a black market operation that kills youngsters for
their organs. She rescues the boy and together they go in search of the boy's long
lost father.

Truly a delightful film and despite the amateurish acting in supporting roles, very
moving as well. Montenegro is outstanding as Dora, and de Oliveira as the young boy
is charming even if he's a bit pushy for a kid. The plotting is a bit predictable, but the
screenwriting has a depth that makes everything fresh and profound. Funny yet tragic,
sad yet uplifting, and one of the best films of 1998.
Part 1: Appraisal Analysis (15 Marks)
Use the table given to analyse the interpersonal meaning in
text below with respect to:
      Appraisal system:
       Graduation: force/focus
       Engagement:projection/modality/concession etc
Graduation   AFFECT   Judgment   Appreciation
• Part 2: Discussion of Appraisal Choices
  in the text.
• After analyzing the text above, with
  reference to your analysis ,what language
  resources are used to persuade the reader
  to align with the writer’s viewpoint and

• Martin and White 2005. Language of
• Martin and Rose 2003. Working with
• Martin, J.R. 2004. Mourning: How We Get
  Aligned. In Discourse and Society. Vol
  15(2–3): 321–344
• Appraisal homepage:
   Good luck with the Quiz!

Remember to work on your term
          paper! 

     See you next week!

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