What Use are Strata? Does Stratification Make a Difference?
Elissa D. Asp [+]
Saint Mary's University
This chapter considers whether stratal organization matters when it comes to potential and actual applications. Arguments are made that the utility of strata are reflected primarily in textual analysis and socio-cultural critique through discourse analysis that is enabled by linking discourse and context to the grammar on the one hand, and work on text generation and related computational tasks on the other. The relevance for text analysis and socio-cultural critique means that in practice stratified models have had very broad influence in fields such as education and areas where ‘designed discourse’ has roles. The relevance for computational tasks is perhaps more specific to the grammar insofar as, for example, the treatment of morphosyntax or lexicogrammar as realizing semantic selections simplifies morphosyntax. Stratified models may also have potential to be informative about neural injuries that affect language and discourse though this potential is underdeveloped in SFL work in clinical linguistics.