This module will focus on extending students’ critical understanding of pragmatic meaning. Central areas of linguistic pragmatics, such as conversational implicature, maxims of conversation, and principles of politeness and speech acts are outlined, discussed and evaluated critically. The module also explores controversies over the universality of the aforementioned theories, looking more closely at how human interaction is based on different cultural scripts and encouraging students to reflect upon and discuss the cultural influences which impact meaning in a range of intercultural communicative settings. Students will also have the opportunity to evaluate the efficacy of pragmatic theories on the basis of empirical investigations, familiarising themselves with the related methodologies and tools of analysis.
A one-hour lecture and a one-hour seminar per week
Method of assessment
• Huang, Y. (2006). Pragmatics. New York: Oxford University Press.
• Jaszczolt, K. (2002). Semantics and Pragmatics: Meaning in Language and Discourse. London: Longman.
• Kadmon, N. (2001). Formal Pragmatics: Semantics, Pragmatics, Presupposition, and Focus. Oxford: Wiley-Blackwell.
• Noveck, I. & Sperber, D. (2004) Experimental Pragmatics. San Diego: Palgrave.
• Sperber, D. & Wilson, D. (1995) (2nd ed.) Relevance: Communication and Cognition. Oxford: Blackwell.
See the library reading list for this module (Canterbury)
1. Demonstrate coherent and detailed knowledge of significant theories concerning the production and interpretation of meaning in context and the ability to apply and critically evaluate the different methodologies associated with these
2. Demonstrate an awareness of the nature of theory and what constitutes an explanation, as well as an understanding of the limitations of theory
3. Critically approach the debates concerning the distinction between semantic and pragmatic aspects of meaning
4. have refined practical linguistic research skills through discussing pragmatic problems and proposing solutions based on current materials
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- The named convenor is the convenor for the current academic session.
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