[xmca] LCA - Hasan: Words, Meaning, Speech?

From: Kristen R. Clark (kristen@webleaf.com)
Date: Wed Jul 06 2005 - 12:39:34 PDT

Hi all - Fantastic discussion. After reading the two Hasan papers I
find myself struggling with a couple of points. I'll bring up just one
in this post. In the "...Three Exotripic Theories..." paper she
writes: "...the child's communication could not be dismissed as a
genetically programmed 'spread of affect', but at the same time it would
be absurd to suggest that the child is 'telling someone something' in
the sense of recounting or debating on an experience. Nor could we
claim that communication depends on the availability of words, and this
is where Vygotsky's own position appears unclear: is the protolinguistic
child communicating, or is he not?"


This passage reminded me of Goodwin's work ("Emotion Within Situated
Action") where an adult with a brain injury clearly both communicates
and has words yet doesn't have speech (as evidenced by his participation
in family discourse through gesture, non-specific vocalizations, etc.).
The questions I have relate to wondering:

Can we think of protolinguistic children as "having words/word meaning"
but not speech and whether/how "having speech" might be different for
our understanding of the debate?

What does Hasan finally suggest regarding where each of the approaches
(V. and SFL) come down on this issue and how they differ?













Kristen Radsliff Clark

Doctoral Candidate

LCHC and Department of Communication

University of California, San Diego




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