Interpersonal grammar of Tagalog: A Systemic Functional Linguistics perspective

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In this paper the interpersonal grammar of Tagalog is explored from the perspective of Systemic Functional Linguistics. Following a brief metafunctional profile of Tagalog grammar, a framework for interpreting the discourse function of Tagalog clauses is introduced – exchange structure. Subsequently the systems of MOOD, POLARITY, MODALITY, TAGGING, VOCATION, COMMENT and ENGAGEMENT are considered, alongside their realisation in tone, clause structure and lexical selection. The role played by these interpersonal systems and structure is then illustrated through a brief sample of Tagalog discourse. The paper demonstrates the manner in which a paradigmatic perspective can be used to integrate the description of grammatical resources typically fragmented and marginalised in syntagmatically organised descriptions.