Deixis and Distance by Tanja Winterberg

Deixis and Distance

byTanja Winterberg

Kobo ebook | July 1, 2006

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Seminar paper from the year 2004 in the subject English Language and Literature Studies - Linguistics, grade: 1.7, University of Duisburg-Essen, course: Pragmatics, 15 entries in the bibliography, language: English, abstract: As the information system in our modern technology world becomes more and more important, the research about language and especially commuication has grown to a major element of today's scholarship. Pragmatics, as a linguistic science dealing with communication, generally is 'concernedwith the study of meaning as communicated by a speaker (or writer) and interpreted by a listener (or reader)'(see Yule,1996: 3). Thus, not the actual meaning of the words are decisive, but the interpretation of the utterance. A simple principle of language use is the fact, that the more two speakers have in common, the less language they will need to use to identify familiar things. When two persons share the same physical context, the speaker frequently uses demonstratives, pronouns, adverbs and other grammatical features to establish a relationship between language and context. We call these words indexicals and the function of language deictic. In today's society deictic usage of laguage becomes more and more problematic. Lyon states: 'Thefacts of deixis should act as a constant reminder [...] that natural languages are primarily desigend, so to speak, for use in face-to-face interaction, and thus there are limits to the extent to which they can be analysed [...]'(Lyons, 1977 in Levinson, 1983: 54). The permanent application of communicative aids like computers, cellphones or pagers evokes a lack of face-to-face interaction and increases the amount of disaccords during a conversation. In this paper I will illustrate and illuminate the different modes of deictic expressions and ascribe it to the problem of understanding in today's society. First, I will give a short definition of deixis as well as a historical grading. Below, I will concentrate on the three major categories person, place and time and briefly on the subcategories social and discourse deixis. Considering as examples the specific categories and their special features will be described and analysed. I conclude with a brief survey about grammar and whether the field of deixis should be classified in pragmatics or in semantics. Finally, I will give a short conclusion that works up the problem of understanding via deictic expression in today's society.

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Title:Deixis and DistanceFormat:Kobo ebookPublished:July 1, 2006Publisher:GRIN PublishingLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:3638515990

ISBN - 13:9783638515993

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