, Volume 16, Issue 4, pp 387-402
Date: 21 Sep 2007

Generating Coherence Relations via Internal Argumentation

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A key requirement for the automatic generation of argumentative or explanatory text is to present the constituent propositions in an order that readers will find coherent and natural, to increase the likelihood that they will understand and accept the author’s claims. Natural language generation systems have standardly employed a repertoire of coherence relations such as those defined by Mann and Thompson’s Rhetorical Structure Theory. This paper models the generation of persuasive monologue as the outcome of an “inner dialogue”, where the author attempts to anticipate potential challenges or clarification requests. It is argued that certain RST relations such as Motivate, Evidence and Concession can be seen to emerge from various pre-empting strategies.