4. Hybridity and process types
Hybridity in Systemic Functional Linguistics - Grammar, Text and Discursive Context - Donna R. Miller
Jorge Arús Hita [+]
Universidad Complutense de Madrid, Spain
Jorge Arus Hita practices his grammatics at clause level as well, also aiming to account for what happens when a typically non-metaphorical lexical verb is used metaphorically. Hybrid processes, he suggests, undergo a transformation in meaning: the literal meaning – which he calls A – is transposed to a different area of the lexicogrammar – B – whereby the resulting hybrid meaning – C – is brought about. Accordingly, hybrid processes are seen as the intended product of literal plus metaphorical senses. Depending on the degree to which the metaphorical load is felt, three levels of hybridity are theorised. With processes whose metaphoricity is perceived as formidable, the A meaning is seen as more prominent than the B meaning in the interpretation of the resulting C meaning. Then there are those cases in which the metaphorical use is well-established and the weight of the A and B meanings fairly balanced. The third level occurs when the A and B meanings have so blended that they can no longer be felt as two distinct senses at all: ‘In this case, we are in front of a new lexicalised meaning, no longer a hybrid but rather … a highbred (as in ‘highbred cattle’) resulting from the previous process of hybridity’. Arùs Hita bolsters his argument by offering multiple analyses for each of these degrees of hybridity and exemplifying the distinctive semantic interplay taking place within each type of construction.