Means of Expressing Parenthesis


Speaking about the Parenthesis, Conjuncts should also be mentioned. Conjuncts serve to mark semantic relationships between propositions expressed by different clauses, or between larger sections of a text. In this respect their function resembles that of conjunctions (coordinating and subordinating), although there is greater positional variation to be found among conjuncts [38].

For example:

Most of the children wanted to go to the beach, but Mary preferred to stay at home (conjunction).

Most of the children wanted to go to the beach; however, Mary preferred to stay at home (conjunct).

Mary preferred to stay at home, however.

In linguistics, the term conjunct is the adjunct that adds information to the sentence that is not considered part of the propositional content (or at least not essential) but which connects the sentence with previous parts of the discourse [38]. Rare, though, conjuncts may also connect to the following parts of the discourse.

It was raining. Therefore, we didn’t go swimming.

It was sunny. However, we stayed inside.

You are such a dork. Still, I love you from the bottom of my heart.

However, there are such coordinating conjuncts as besides, however, nevertheless, otherwise, so, therefore, still, yet, though which can be used in other ways and sometimes as other parts of speech. The position will vary according to how they are used [22, 288].

A) Besides (preposition) means ‘in addition to’. It precedes a noun/ pronoun/ gerund:

In this world of his own making, probably the man besides being cynical and completely unscrupulous about the whole thing, he basically believes that this is going to play [COCA, SPOK, 1990].

Besides (adverb) means ‘in addition’. It usually precedes the clause it introduces, but can follow it:

They know you and your team are here, and that keeps them away. Besides, you know they only come out at dusk [COCA, FIC, 2011].

Moreover could replace besides here in more formal English. Anyway or in any case could be used here in more informal English:

Moreover/ anyway, you know they only come out at dusk.

B) However (adverb of degree) precede its adjective/adverb:

The novitiate became an active instrument of the sovereignty struggle for the Warriors, however short-lived [COCA, ACAD, 2002].

READ:  Semantic classification of Parenthesis

However (conjunct) usually means ‘but’. It can precede or follow its clause or come after the first word or phrase:

Several investment advisers, however, cautioned that many people need a better return than the new securities are likely to offer [COCA, NEWS, 1997].

However, it is unclear whether this immunity would extend to pollution caused by the land application of products from such a facility [COCA, ACAD, 1999].

The part of Esther they want to “reclaim” seems unclear, however [COCA, ACAD, 2010].

But when two contrasting statements are mentioned, however can mean ‘but/ nevertheless/all the same’:

“You’re right, I reckon. All the same/ but/ nevertheless, I feel like beating the tar out of him” [COCA, FIC, 2011].

C) Otherwise (adverb) usually comes after the verb:

It was otherwise difficult to convince people that anything I carried in my little medical box would be curative in any more profound sense [COCA, ACAD, 1996].

Otherwise (conjunct) means ‘if not / or else’

“He waited a couple more hours we might not have been there.”

“Otherwise, we would have missed him” [COCA, SPOK, 2011].

Or could also be used here in colloquial English:

He waited a couple more hours we might not have been there, or we would have missed him.

D) So (adverb of degree) precede its adjective/adverb:

And what I’m really asking you is, why has there been so much focus [COCA, SPOK, 1990]?

So (conjunct) precedes its clause:

Doing chores with him meant I didn’t have to make dinner, but it also meant Pa had something he wanted to say, so it was hard to know whether I felt freed or trapped [COCA, FIC, 2006].

E) Therefore (conjunct) can be used instead of so in formal English. It can come at the beginning of the clause or after the first word or phrase; or before the main verb:

Therefore, we can conclude that the constellations described by Aratus were invented around 2000 BC by people who lived close to latitude 36 degrees north [COCA, ACAD, 1990].

We, therefore, hypothesized that the perceived relationship quality between the inquirer and information source would be positively associated with employees’ expectancy value of technical information inquiry and negatively associated with employees’ perceived impression management cost of technical information inquiry [COCA, ACAD, 2003].

Adolescents may therefore assimilate more of their society’s customs than younger children [COCA, ACAD, 1998].

F) Still and yet can be adverbs of time.

READ:  Appendix 1-2

Let’s assume she’s still alive. They just haven’t found her yet.

Still and yet (conjuncts) come at the beginning of the clauses they introduce.

Still (conjunct) means ‘admitting that/ nevertheless’.

Yet (conjunct) means ‘in spite of that/ all the same / nevertheless’:

Still, it was a quaint town: neat rows of white houses wrapping the hillside, church steeples and cobblestone streets, the tall silver domes of an Orthodox cathedral [COCA, FIC, 2009].

Yet the continued presence of Lady Anne Fitzwilliam Darcy was as real and pervasive as that of any specter [COCA, FIC, 2008].

G) Though/ Although normally introduce clauses of concession.

Though the property is small, private gardens on each side of the house make it feel more expansive [COCA, MAG, 2010].

English conjuncts often have the following functions in the sentence [15, 247]:

1) Listing (indicating that what follows is a list of propositions):

To start with, she discovered her father had two daughters from a previous marriage, meaning Wendy had sisters [COCA, SPOK, 2009].

2) Enumerative (indicating items on a list of propositions):

In terms of the report’s overall conclusions, Nobre says, finding that the southern and southeastern regions of the Amazon area are much more vulnerable compared with the northwest conveys two messages: “First, you have to prevent deforestation in the west and northwest and maintain it as protected lands as much as possible. That is where the forest is resilient. Second, considering the south and southeast reduce deforestation and special effort is needed to save as many species as possible” [COCA, ACAD, 2011]

Additive (indicating that the content of the sentence is in addition to the preceding one):

In addition, the graves held gold necklaces, rings, scepters, and even a gold penis sheath [COCA, ACAD, 2011].

4) Summative (summing up, or concluding, on the preceding sentence(s)):

To sum up, celebrities possess narcissistic predispositions (nature), these being subsequently reinforced by a wide range of environmental realities (nurture), rendering it next-to-impossible to slay the Narcissism Dragon [COCA, MAG, 2009].

5) Appositive (rephrasing the preceding sentence):

READ:  Appendix 3-5

We filled each other with fear and anger, then made jokes and laughed together, to soften the blows,’ she writes – in other words, they did what all siblings do [COCA, NEWS, 2011].

6) Resultative/inferential (indicating that the content of the sentence is a result of the events expressed in the preceding sentence):

At the very least, our data suggest that students are not receiving a clear and accurate assessment of their skill sets, and that faculty are ill informed about the needs of public and private-sector plant scientists. Therefore, universities and colleges are not providing graduates with the skills required by nonacademic employers [COCA, ACAD, 2011].

7) Antithetic (indicating that the content of the sentence is in contrast to the content of the preceding sentence):

By penalizing old-fashioned morality in this way you do not make toleration of the new morality more likely. On the contrary, you sow the seeds of resentment, by removing from ordinary people the freedom to follow their conscience in a matter that deeply troubles them [COCA, MAG, 2011].

8) Concessive (indicating that the content of the sentence “exists” despite the content in the preceding sentence):

Thanks to the new proliferation of live broadcasts, we now can watch dance productions from Europe at the moment of their performance. This is not always a boon, however [COCA, NEWS, 2011].

9) Temporal (indicating temporal relation between the content of the sentence and the preceding sentence):

Radiation fears are increasing in Japan tonight. Meanwhile, a handful of brave workers remained in a crippled nuclear plant risking dangerous exposure as they battle to shut down the plant [COCA, SPOK, 2011].

Conjuncts can be used to express the semantic relationship between propositions: comparison (similarly, likewise), contrast (on the other hand), concession (however, nevertheless), reason (therefore, because of that), result (consequently, in consequence, as a result) [38].

Conjuncts can be used to indicate the organization of a text: addition (in addition, furthermore), enumeration (first, secondly, finally), transition (by the way; meanwhile, in the meantime) [49].