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Intercultural Communication

Intercultural Communication. Unit 1 / Week 10. Pragmatics. Pragmatics is concerned with the notion of implicature , i.e. implied meaning as opposed to the mere lexical meaning expressed (Grice, 1968). Pragmatics: Example 1. Two women discussing their children:

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Intercultural Communication

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  1. Intercultural Communication Unit 1 / Week 10

  2. Pragmatics • Pragmatics is concerned with the notion of implicature, i.e. implied meaning as opposed to the mere lexical meaning expressed (Grice, 1968)

  3. Pragmatics: Example 1 Two women discussing their children: A: How is Tom going at school?B: Ah, well ... you know what they say: boys will be boys. A: Yeah, but girls are no easier ... you know what Jess did the other day? ... (Adapted from Wierzbicka 1991, p. 391)

  4. Pragmatics: Example 2 On being disturbed by the next-door neighbour's lawnmower early on Sunday morning: A: Great way to wake up! B: (grumpily) Sure is.

  5. Pragmatics: Example 3 "My friends were poor, but honest.“ • 'but' carries the implicature that what follows runs counter to expectations. • The 'expectation' is that "poor people are dishonest".

  6. Culture-specific Pragmatic Features • mental sets • schemata • scripts • speech events • sociocultural norms • linguistic etiquette • pragmatic accent

  7. Inter-cultural Pragmatic Failure • "Pragmatic errors are the result of an interactant imposing the social rules of one culture on his communicative behaviour in a situation where the social rules of another culture would be more appropriate" (Riley 1989: 234).

  8. Cross Cultural Pragmatics

  9. Example: Telephone conversations in Greek and German (Pavlidou 2000) (Telephone rings) Soula {in Greek} [Ne?] $Yes?$ Elena {in Greek} [Ne?] $Yes?$ {the rest of the conversation is in German} BärbelJa, hier is Barbara. Kannichbitte den Wolfgang sprechen? $Yes, this is Barbara speaking. Can I talk to Wolfgang please?$ Soula {short hesitation, because of uncertainty as to which Barbara it is - we usually use the diminutive 'Bärbel' for this relative - and then a bit annoyed that she passes over Elena and me} Ja, Bärbel, aber du kannsterst mal Elena und mirGuten Tag [sagen.] $Yes, Bärbel, but you can say hello to Elena and me first.$ Elena [{hangs up}] BärbelJa, natürlich. Ichhabeerst mal gar nix verstanden [. . .] $Yes, of course. I did not understand a thing in the beginning [. . .]$ {although Bärbel does not speak Greek, she had hoped to at least understand the name, which she expected to hear in the very first answering turn.}

  10. Regions of the UK

  11. Bibliography Grice, H.P. (1968). “Utterer’s Meaning, Sentence Meaning, and Word Meaning,” Foundations of Language, 4. pp. 225-242. Pavlidou, Theodossia-Soula (2008) “Interactional Work in Greek and German Telephone Conversations” in H. Spencer-Oatey ed., Culturally Speaking, London: Continuum. pp.118-135. Wierzbicka, A. (1991). Cross-cultural Pragmatics: The Semantics of Human Interaction. Berlin: Walter de Gruyter & Co.

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