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[Xmca-l] Re: [Rstlist] RST versus issue trees?



OK, Ed. Can I ask you to edit some of my awful writing? I mean, just clear
away phrases like "there are some not so well known indicators" and "our
author doesn't clear away any of this" where I try to imitate what I am
criticizing. I think that's not very helpful for RST people. I am not very
even tempered when I write these days (I've had eighteen rejections in one
year and I need acceptances in order to finish my PhD!)

Note that all this is pretty elementary for people who know RST. I doubt if
they will be impressed. Here is something that's rather more impressive.

In Matthiessen's "systemic-functionally flavoured" RST, he has three kinds
of expansion:

a) elaboration: that is, "e.g., "i.e.", "in other words" (=)
b) extension: "moreover", "furthermore", "in addition" (+)
c) enhancement: a very large category including reason, result, manner,
means, time, space: "so", "because", "in a way", "by way of", "meanwhile",
"elsewhere". (x, /, etc.)

Now, you might think that is a developmental order, because there seems to
be more semantic distance created in c) than in a).

Not a bit of it! In my data on oral presentations, the novices prefer c)
and the experts do a). Not only that, but BOTH novices and experts seem to
start out doing c) when they prepare and end up dong a) when they are ready.

Why?

David Kellogg
Macquarie University

On Wed, Apr 19, 2017 at 2:11 AM, Edward Wall <ewall@umich.edu> wrote:

> David
>
>      I apologize in taking so long in getting back to this; my email
> account has been essentially inaccessible for a week.
>
>     Thanks for this analysis! I will pass it on.
>
> Ed
>
> > On Apr 12, 2017, at  4:48 PM, David Kellogg <dkellogg60@gmail.com>
> wrote:
> >
> > Ed:
> >
> > What happens to an "issue tree" when a branch breaks, either because the
> > wind is too strong or the branch is too long? Here are some
> > non-metaphorical examples of what I mean, taken directly from the links
> you
> > provided:
> >
> > "There are some well known indicators that expressed thought has a
> > branching structure. The outline, for example, and the nesting of blog
> > comments are both tree structures. There are also various so-called “mind
> > mapping” techniques. My discovery is that this structure is precise, well
> > defined and universal.Actually it is not quite this simple because
> > sometimes a statement will refer to a body of prior statements rather
> that
> > a single one, but that is an advanced topic. The real question is, how is
> > this useful to know?"
> >
> > There are some not very well known indicators that the author is being a
> > sloppy thinker here. For example, an outline is actually a list. It can
> be
> > nested, but it isn't always. And nesting isn't always an example of
> > branching structure (it's usually an example of embedding, which is
> > something quite different). "Mind-mapping" can include branching
> > and nesting, but the original idea was that it was supposed to include
> > everything, whether connected or not, and then you clear away things that
> > are not connected.
> >
> > Our author doesn't clear away any of this. To his credit, though, he does
> > hesitate a little over the sheer audacity of "My discovery...".  But then
> > he provides us with the classic business-school fake-out: I know the
> > answer, but it's too advanced for you; it's for my high-paying customers.
> > Here's a question you Art of the Deal 101 types really WILL care about:
> how
> > can I USE this? Since we are not business school types, but academics, we
> > might consider this as his answer:
> >
> > "For some time I have been working on a basic model of scientific
> progress
> > (or, since “progress” is a value-loaded term, a model of how science
> > progresses)."
> >
> > Now, you can see that the material in parentheses is indeed an answer to
> a
> > question which the imaginary interlocutor might have about the first
> > clause, to wit:
> >
> > "What the hell do you mean, progress? You call this progress?"
> >
> > We shall leave aside, for the moment, the naïve assumption that words
> like
> > "model", "scientific", "working", and even "for some time" are not value
> > loaded in precisely the same way. You can certainly see that his idea
> > that turning a noun into a verb makes it less value-loaded is risible.
> >
> > I think RST is a much more serious approach, Ed. The problem that David
> > Wojick is TRYING to address with his sloppy thinking is a key one: it's
> > Vygotsky's genetic law ""How does communication lead to
> > co-generalization?"), the problem Bernstein raised ("How does the outside
> > become the inside?" which is actually a NON-dualist question), and an
> > essential problem of speech development in children ("How does dialogue
> > become narrative, in artistic thinking, and how do verbalized perceptions
> > give rise to hierarchies of invisible concepts"?).
> >
> > So for example:
> >
> > a)
> >
> > BEAST: "I'm ugly."
> > BELLA: "Yes, you are. But you are gentle."
> >
> >
> > b)
> >
> > BEAST: "I'm ugly, but I'm gentle.
> >
> >
> > c)
> >
> > BEAST: "Despite my ugliness (for all ill-proportioned countenance), I am
> > capable of tenderness."
> >
> > Now, you can see that something has turned into something else (a turn
> has
> > become a clause, and a clause has become a nominalization). You can see
> > this is related to the formation of concepts that can be taxonomized,
> > classified, and made volitionally accessible. But you can also see that
> > describing exactly how it happens requires a grammatical model, and not
> > just a set of Trump U. truisms.
> >
> > That's why Christian Matthiessen combined the original RST (which he
> > collaborated on with Bill Mann) with systemic functional grammar. What's
> > really happening here is grammatical metaphor. Just as a "tree" is a
> > LEXICAL metaphor for branching in dialogue, a nominalization becomes a
> > GRAMMATICAL metaphor for a clause. This grammatical metaphor is what
> > Vygotsky really means when he says that "word meaning develops".
> >
> > David Kellogg
> > Macquarie University
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > On Thu, Apr 13, 2017 at 3:17 AM, Edward Wall <ewall@umich.edu> wrote:
> >
> >> David
> >>
> >>     You have, perhaps, thought about this far more than I.  Any
> comments.
> >>
> >> Ed
> >>
> >>
> >>> Begin forwarded messagexc
> >>>
> >>> From: David Wojick <dwojick@craigellachie.us>
> >>> Subject: [Rstlist] RST versus issue trees?
> >>> Date: April 12, 2017 at 11:46:09 AM CDT
> >>> To: rstlist@listserv.linguistlist.org
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> My interest in the RST list is that I have developed a method that does
> >> something like RST, but is different, so I want to discuss it with the
> RST
> >> group. It is called the issue tree.
> >>> See https://scholarlykitchen.sspnet.org/2013/07/10/the-
> >> issue-tree-structure-of-expressed-thought/
> >>>
> >>> My impression is that RST (about which I know little) is based on a
> >> relatively small constructed taxonomy of relations between "spans" of
> text.
> >> See http://www.sfu.ca/rst/01intro/intro.html for a listing of these
> >> relations.
> >>>
> >>> Issue tree theory has no such taxonomy. It is based on the following
> >> fundamental observation:
> >>>
> >>> With certain important exceptions, every sentence in a text (except the
> >> first) is answering a specific question posed to a specific prior
> sentence.
> >>>
> >>> Thus the set of relations between sentences is the set of all possible
> >> questions. The tree structure occurs because more than one question can
> be
> >> asked of a given sentence and this frequently occurs. The questions are
> >> often quite simple, such as how?, why?, such as?, what evidence?, etc.
> >>>
> >>> For example consider this string of sentences: We have to go. The cops
> >> are coming. Use the back door.
> >>>
> >>> The second sentence is answering the question why? of the first, while
> >> the third sentence is answering the question how? of the first. This is
> a
> >> simple issue tree.
> >>>
> >>> Note that these are reasoning relations, not rhetorical relations.
> >>>
> >>> When there are many sentences, as in a journal article, the issue tree
> >> can be difficult to grasp just by reading the string of sentences. Here
> the
> >> issue tree diagram becomes useful. One can see the reasoning. One can
> also
> >> measure it in various useful ways.
> >>>
> >>> Also the RST analysis looks to be applicable only to individual
> >> documents, while any set of documents on a given topic will have a
> unique
> >> combined issue tree structure. Moreover, the issue tree can be scaled to
> >> show just the reasoning relations between documents rather than
> sentences.
> >> Let's say we have 400 recent journal articles on a given topic, which
> is a
> >> fairly typical number. An issue tree diagram of a few thousand nodes
> could
> >> show the collective reasoning that ties this corpus together. The state
> of
> >> the reasoning, as it were. The technology is pretty powerful.
> >>>
> >>> I welcome your thoughts.
> >>>
> >>> David
> >>>
> >>> David Wojick, Ph.D.
> >>> https://scholarlykitchen.sspnet.org/author/dwojick/
> >>>
> >>> _______________________________________________
> >>> Rstlist mailing list
> >>> Rstlist@listserv.linguistlist.org
> >>> http://listserv.linguistlist.org/mailman/listinfo/rstlist
> >>
> >>
>
>
>