Tag Archives: Systemic Functional Grammar

Experiential Meaning Construction in Political Discourse: A Transitivity Analysis of the Inaugural Address of Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, the President of the Republic of Ghana (Published)

The exploration of the interface between language and politics is taking a heightened dimension across disciplines. The study examined how language has been used by President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo in his inaugural address to the people of Ghana from a functional perspective. The study is premised on Halliday’s Systemic Functional Grammar and employs the qualitative research design in the analysis of the text. The main focus of the study was the analysis of transitivity in the address and the functions it plays in political discourse. The study applied the interpretative content analysis to investigate the communicative functions of the linguistic choices made in the address. The study used 284 clauses in the inaugural address for the analysis. It was discovered that material processes dominate the speech whereas the existential process types are used minimally. The dominant use of material processes implies that president Nana Addo and his government are going to be the main actors working on several concrete projects to create a sense of continuity in development and policy direction in a challenging administration he has inherited. The use of the material clauses, therefore, shows the enthusiasm with which the president intends to work in order to reform the challenging economy. The minimal use of the existential processes also implies that though there have been some attempts to solve Ghana’s socio-economic challenges, some problems persist in the country. The speech recorded no behavioural process type because the study did not analyse the paralinguistic elements of the text. The study concludes that the president made use of more primary process types in his inaugural address than the secondary process types.

Citation: Cynthia Logogye and  Lawrence Ewusi-Mensah (2021)  Experiential Meaning Construction in Political Discourse: A Transitivity Analysis of the Inaugural Address of Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, the President Of The Republic Of Ghana, European Journal of English Language and Literature Studies, Vol.9, No.7, pp.24-33

Keywords: Inaugural Address, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, Systemic Functional Grammar, Transitivity, process types

A Contrastive Study of the Construction of Corporate Environmental Image in Chinese and American Corporate Social Responsibility Reports from the Perspective of Systemic Functional Grammar (Published)

By disclosing more corporate environmental protection information in a corporate social responsibility (CSR) report, a company could enhance their competitive advantage and improve corporate image to attract more customers. This study aims to conduct a contrastive analysis of the Chinese and American corporations’ environmental protection discourse in their CSR reports so as to explore the similarities and differences between them as well as cultural reasons for the differences. We select China National Petroleum Corporation (CNPC) and ExxonMobil (EM) as the subjects for study. With the help of corpus tool and from the perspective of systemic functional grammar, our study finds that material processes are used most frequently in both of Chinese and American corporations’ CSR reports. EM tends to apply more relational and mental processes to construct a powerful and confident image of a corporation which has rich experience in protecting environment and is optimistic about environmental protection, while CNPC uses less mental and relational processes to show a corporation which is very concerned about environment and has made some achievements. And present tense takes up the largest proportion in EM’s environmental discourse to emphasize what they are doing, while CNPC tends to use more past tense to show that in the past years they have done a lot in environmental protection. Modality appears more frequently in EM’s reports to build a closer relationship with stakeholders. The differences can be explained by their different value orientations towards time, motive for behaving and relating to other people because China is a past and hierarchical oriented society while America is a future and present oriented as well as individualistic oriented society.

Keywords: CSR reports, Systemic Functional Grammar, corporate environmental protection image, value orientation theory


Rosemary Ede’s debut play has, so far, not been subjected to intensive and extensive critical examination, particularly from a linguistic standpoint, to show how a new generation playwright has responded to and interpreted the onerous challenges of her postcolonial African society through the instrumentality or facility of language. with M.A.K. Halliday’s systemic functional grammar as the theoretical template, this study, therefore, investigates the lexico-semantic devices such as local signifiers (i.e. native proverbs and idioms, code-mixing and code-switching), figurations (i.e. simile, metaphor, alliteration), lexical repetition, and lexical relations (i.e. synonymy and antonymy), which have been deployed by the author to transmit or reinforce textual meaning and achieve aesthetic beauty. The study adumbrates the fact that the making of a literary text is a conscious artistic activity, since writers make deliberate linguistic choices from the vast range of options available to them to appropriately and effectively convey their visions and achieve requisite stylistic effects, in relation to social context or discourse situation.

Keywords: African Literary Discourse., Avarice at Dusk, Lexico-Semantic, Rosemary Ede, Systemic Functional Grammar

Transitivity in Kufour’s 2008 Farewell Speech to the Ghanaian Parliament (Published)

This study uses Halliday’s transitivity theory to analyse the use of language in President J. A. Kufuor’s farewell address to Parliament. The study uses the content analysis design to analyse all the clauses in the address. The study reveals that among the six process types under the transitivity model, the material processes are used maximally in the speech whereas the existential processes are used minimally. There was, however, no behavioural process in the address. The dominant use of material clauses suggest that Kufuor interprets the world in terms of his past and present “goings-on” happenings by recounting some of the concrete achievements recorded under his eight-year stewardship and making useful suggestions to the incoming government in order to ensure continuity in projects his administration has initiated. His choice of actors suggests that Kufuor attributes the achievements to himself which may be perceived as a feature of undemocratic leadership style; however his determination to share his wealth of experience with the incoming government corrects the impression that he is undemocratic. He also uses a majority of relational identifications to point out to himself and his administration as the main development players. Verbal processes have been used as markers of transition and topic shift; still, he refers to himself as the main sayer. The study concludes and affirms that material, relational and mental processes are the three primary processes often used in language since the three add up to about 90% (Halliday&Matthiessen, 2004).

Keywords: Farewell Address, Ghana, John Agyekum Kufuor, Parliament, Political Ideologies, Systemic Functional Grammar, Transitivity