This book is an anthology of four papers that offers a cross-linguistic and inter-
disciplinary exploration of modality within systemic functional linguistics (SFL).
Drawing upon the broad SFL notion of modality that refers to the intermediate
degrees between the positive and negative poles, the individual papers probe into
the modality systems in English and Japanese. The papers cover issues such as the
conceptual nature of modality in both languages, the characterization of modula-
tion in Japanese, the trans-grammatical aspects of modality in relation to mood
and grammatical metaphor in both languages, and the modality uses and pragmatic
impairment by individuals with a developmental disorder from a neurocognitive
Chapter 2 develops a descriptive framework of modulation in Japanese from
the perspective of Systemic Functional Linguistics (SFL). Iimura’s work sets out
to explicate main contributions to the area of modality in traditional Japanese lin-
guistics (Narrog 2009, 2014; Masuoka 2007), including typological studies (Palmer
2001). It emerges that despite the attention given by many scholars, there still re-
mains some diversity regarding the definition of mood and modality, the inter-
relation between the two systems, and the range of forms to be included in each
system. It is also confirmed that the findings in many studies outside SFL tend to
be confined to the notional analysis of modality and modal expressions with little
attention to text analysis.
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