[b-hebrew] Relevance Theory & Hebrew Semantics

Eduard C Hanganu eddhanganu at hotmail.com
Tue Aug 17 20:02:48 EDT 2004

Dear Clay:

I don't know what is your working definition of "cohesion, " but I suspect 
that it is rather limited. You have to remember that without text cohesion 
there is no coherence, logicality and relevance in the text, that actually 
without cohesion there is no text (see Odlin, 2000 in "Language Transfer.") 
Take a look at Halliday and Hasan's (1976) lenghty discussion on "Cohesion 
in English." On page 10, when they discuss 'cohesion and discourse 
structure,' they state:

"Cohesion refers to the range of possibilities that exist for linking 
something with what has gone before. Since this linking is achieved through 
relations in MEANING (we are excluding from consideration the effects of 
formal devices such as syntactic parallelism, metre and rhyme), what is in 
question is the set of meaning relations which function in this way: the 
semantic resources which are drawn on for the purpose of creating text. And 
since, as we have stresssed, it is the sentence that is the pivotal entry 
here - whatever is put together within one sentence is ipso facto part of a 
text - we can interpret cohesion in practice, as the set of semantic 
resources for linking a SENTENCE with what has gone before."

If I understand the paragraph correctly, it is not the mechanical 
(morphological and syntactic) devices that create cohesion in a text, but 
the semantic resources that 'glue' phrases and sentences together and 
produce meaning. These ' semantic resources' are essential because without 
meaning there is no text, no communication, no message.


From: "C. Stirling Bartholomew" <jacksonpollock at earthlink.net>
To: hebrew <b-hebrew at lists.ibiblio.org>
Subject: Re: [b-hebrew] Relevance Theory & Hebrew Semantics
Date: Tue, 17 Aug 2004 13:13:57 -0700

On 8/17/04 12:09 PM, "Peter Kirk" <peterkirk at qaya.org> wrote:

 > Some texts like Ecclesiastes, and parts of Proverbs, may be made up of a
 > separate short discourses thrown together with no real cohesion. But at
 > least we can assume that each such discourse is intended to make sense.


Discourse segments at every level can have general cohesion but lack
cohesion in some details. I was recently working on a crux in Luke 4:22
(off-topic) where cohesion breaks down in the last clause of the verse.
Trying to force cohesion onto this last clause causes more problems than it
solves. I can't grab an OT example from memory.

I am not talking about random collections of words.

Clay Bartholomew

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