Textual connectors – Concept, functions and examples

We explain what textual connectors are and the function of additive, disjunctive, causal, emphatic connectors and more.

textual connectors
The textual connectors highlight meanings necessary for the coherence of the message.

What are textual connectors?

It is known in linguistics as textual connectors, text markers, discourse connectors, or discourse operators a the phrases and / or words that guide the reader in a text and they highlight for him certain meanings necessary for the coherence of the message.

That is, these phrases and / or words allow the correct connection between the parts of the text, not only so that it can be read as a unit, but so that its parts are endowed with a logical relationship.

This type of connectors should not be confused with the grammatical links that allow the purely grammatical union of the text, that is, that allow to pass from one sentence to another, or from one word to another. Unlike these links, textual connectors have a clear and logical identity. introduce a precise and determined meaning into the text.

In fact, taking into account this meaning, distinguish between connectors of diverse nature: additive, adversative, disjunctive, causal-consecutive, temporal, locative, comparative, continuous, repetitive, clarifying, conclusive, conditional, explanatory, hypothetical, emphatic and purposeful. We will look at each category separately below.

See also: Textual cohesion

Additive or coupling connectors

They are that allow to join, incorporate or add ideas, concepts or sections, thus adding information new to the text. Sometimes they can be used to reinforce what has been said with new information. For example: “Dragonflies are ephemeral animals, in fact, it is estimated that on average an adult lives between a week and 56 days ”.

Other examples of these connectors are: and, in addition, even, on the other hand, on the other hand, also, at the same time, in addition, it is more, if that were not enough, also, still, above all, above, in fact , likewise, etc.

Disjunctive connectors

They are those who, contrary to the previous case, allow to oppose one idea with another, incorporate alternatives, or separate ideas, establishing the need for a choice: either it is one thing, or it is the other. For example: “We must be ready to fight, or then we will end up surrendering to the enemy quickly “

Other examples of these connectors are: or, or, among others, either, or, etc.

Adversative connectors

They are that oppose one idea with a new one, that is, they establish a relationship of antagonism between the two or rivalry, and introduce arguments in favor of that point of view. For example: “Winter is cold in my city, Nevertheless, it is not as much as in other neighboring regions ”.

Other examples of this type of connectors: but, despite, still, however, however, even so, anyway, instead, on the contrary, while, while, despite the fact that, although, though, etc.

Causal and consecutive connectors

causal textual connectors
Causal connectors indicate that something was originated by something else.

They are those who, as their name implies, establish a logical relationship of causality or consequence between ideas, that is, they make one thing the originator of another or subsequent ones, or that one is the result or product of some previous one.

For example: “In Antarctica it never rains, hence there is no vegetation on the entire continent “or” In Antarctica there is no vegetation whatsoever, because it never rains ”.

Other examples of this type of connectors are: therefore, therefore, therefore, because of, therefore, due to, thus, so that, so that, consequently, therefore, so that, thus that, since, while, because, etc.

Temporary connectors

They are those connectors that establish a relationship of sequence and temporality, that is, that determine which thing came first and which came next, or establish a temporal frame of reference for what was said. In turn, these connectors can be of three types:

  • Legacy temporary connectors, which establish that something happens before something else, as in the case of “The presidential entourage arrived at the building, previously inspected by the security forces ”. Other examples of this type are: at the beginning, at the beginning, long ago, before, at the beginning, long ago, before, initially, in the first place, etc.
  • Concurrency temporary connectors, which establish that something occurs at the same time as something else, that is, simultaneously, as in the case of “The train was arriving at the station, While the passengers were crowding on the platform ”. Other examples of this type are: at the same time, at that precise moment, simultaneously, at the same time, in parallel, when, etc.
  • Post temporary connectors, which establish that something happens after something else previously, that is, later, as in the case of “The rain and the wind intensified for a few moments. Subsequently, things calmed down ”. Other examples of this type are: later, later, finally, over time, later, later, etc.

Locative connectors

They are that establish a spatial relationship between the referents of the discourse, establishing where things are going, either real or figurative. For example: “The scientific entourage arrived at the congress. There they will present the findings of their research ”.

Other connectors of this type are the following: here, there, where, where, next to, next to, in front of, above, below, between which, within what, etc.

Comparative connectors

They are that establish a comparison, simile or comparison between two or more ideas, either to highlight their common features or their dissimilarities. For example: “Arachnids have four pairs of jointed legs, contrary to insects, which have only three ”.

Other connectors of this same type are: likewise, similarly to, like, analogously, likewise, in the same way, contrary to, inversely to, contrary to, instead, similarly, etc.

Continuous connectors

They are those connectors that give continuity to a theme or pose a transition towards a next segment of the text, referring to what comes next and in some way announcing it. For instance: “Next we will review some cases of symbiosis like the one previously described ”.

Other connectors of this type are: in addition, additionally, having said the above, at this point, with respect to the above, for example, onwards, etc.

Conclusive connectors

They are that they serve to lead the text towards a conclusion, or introduce an idea derived from what has already been said. For instance: “In concussion, the political actors of our country have not wanted to address the issue discussed so far, for reasons that we still do not understand ”.

Other connectors of the same type are: in short, synthesizing, in short, to conclude, in short, therefore, therefore, etc.

Conditional connectors

They are those that introduce a conditionality with respect to some idea of ​​the text, that is, that condition what is said to some other element or reference, in such a way that if that is not fulfilled, neither is the conditioned. For example: “Elections lead to a democratic government, as long as it respects the institutionality and human rights ”.

Other connectors of this type are: given that, provided that, provided that, if, unless, unless, etc.

Explanatory or explanatory connectors

They are that serve to introduce an explanation, that is, to return to something already said to say it better or more deeply, or to detail a concept or a clarification. For example: “The Italian government prevented migrants from setting foot on European soil. This is, they denied their request for asylum in their territory ”.

Other connectors of the same type are: that is, in other words, in other words, or what is the same, returning to it, this means that, therefore, therefore, etc.

Hypothetical connectors

They are that They serve to introduce into the text judgments or opinions regarding which there is no absolute certainty, but they appear as a possibility, with a certain margin of doubt. For example: “The jury has been slow to render a verdict. it’s possible that there is much debate among its members ”.

Other connectors of the same type are as follows: maybe, maybe, maybe, possibly, maybe, probably, assuming, etc.

Emphatic connectors

The opposite case of the previous category, are those connectors that reinforce or insist on the meaning of what has been said, underlining or emphasizing it, which usually translates into a sense of security, conviction or commitment from the author. For example: “My best friend got a new job. No doubt that life will be better for him now ”.

Other connectors of the same type can be: definitely, without a doubt, in effect, indisputably, precisely, of course that, etc.

Purpose connectors

They are those who allow to emphasize the purpose, objective or intention of something said within the text. For example: “The social actors met in front of the congress, with the purpose of pressure the deputies to enact the new law ”.

Other connectors of the same type are: with the purpose of, for the sake of, for, by way of, in order to, with the intention of, for that, etc.