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The relationship of cohesion and coherence has always been a central issue in the study of discourse processing. In order to achieve a more thorough understanding of the relationship, this article tackles the issue from a contrastive linguistic point of view. Halliday and Hasan (1976), Widdowson (1978), Carrell (1982), Brown and Yule (1983) are reviewed to identify their claims about cohesion and coherence. Several Chinese texts are then analyzed with a focus on the use of reference and conjunctive relations. The analysis shows that cohesion, as surface linguistic features, can not account fully for the coherence of a text. Rather, underlying semantic relations as well as readers' perceptions of the text should be taken into consideration to construct a complete picture of discourse processing.
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