Sometimes you just feel lucky : I was reading the famous article by Charles J. Fillmore, “Corpus linguistics” or “Computer-aided armchair linguistics”, in the proceedings of a Nobel symposium which took place in 1991 (it is known for the introducing descriptions of the armchair and of the corpus linguist who don’t have anything to say to each other) as I decided to read the following article. The title did not seem promising to me, but still, it was written by Halliday :
M.A.K. Halliday, Language as system and language as instance: The corpus as a theoretical construct, pp. 61-77.
The author gives a few insights on the questions which one could ask to a given text to find a language model. One of the points has to do with “text dynamics”. Here is how Halliday defines it :
« It is a form of dynamic in which there is (or seems to be) an increase in complexity over time: namely, the tendency for complexity to increase in the course of the text. » (p. 69)
In fact, Halliday develops a very interesting idea from the textual dimension of complexity, also named the “unfolding of the text” (p. 69), its “individuation” or the …more ...