Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin

Discourse Relations and Appraisal

Project PI: Dr. Maite Taboada; September 2014 – August 2016; Simon Fraser University

This project investigates the relationship between coherence relations (relations between propositions) and appraisal. In particular, we examine the role of coherence relations in the interpretation of evaluative words. By combining RST and Appraisal Theory, we analyze how different types of coherence relation influence the evaluative content expressed by nouns, adjectives, adverbs and verbs found in the relational unit. We found that relations such as Concession, Elaboration, Evaluation, Evidence and Restatement most frequently intensify the polarity of opinion words. We also find that most opinion words (about 70 percent) are positioned in the nucleus.