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what does speech acts mean

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  • what does speech acts mean

    What does speech acts mean
    who can explain it to me with examples

  • #2
    My dear sister Duaa , I ask you to read this text carefully.If you have not get what you have been looking for, I will simplify it more




    speech acts

    We have been considering some ways in which we interpret the meanings of
    sentences intended to convey .What we have not yet explored
    is the fact that we also usually know how speakers intend us to 'take' (or
    ,interpret the function of) what they say . In very geeneral terms. We can
    usually recognize the type of act performed by a speaker in uttering a sentence
    . The use of the term speech act covers actions such as requesting, commanding
    , questioning , and informing. It is typically the case that we use the following
    linguistic forms with the following functions .The forms would be described in the
    syntantic analysis of a language, and the function as what people use language
    for

    When a form such as Did he.....? Are they....? or Can you...? is used to ask
    a question , it is described as a direct speech act . For example, when a speaker
    does not know something and asks the hearer to provide the information, he or
    she will typically produce a direct speech act of the following type
    Can you ride a bicycle
    Now compare this utterance with Can you pass the salt ? In this
    second example, you would not usually understand the utterance
    as aquestion about your ability to do something. In fact,you would not treat this
    as a question at all. You would treat it as a request and perform the action
    requested. Yet, this request has been presented in the syntactic form usually
    associated with a question . Such an example is described as an indirect speech act
    . Whenever one of the forms in the set above is used to perform a function
    other than the one listed beside it (on the same line) , the result is an indirect speech
    act. The following utterances has the form normally associated with a statement :You left the
    door open. If you say this sentence to someone who has just come into your room
    (and it's pretty cold outside), you would probably be understood to have made not a statement
    , but a request. You are requesting , indirectly, that the person close the door
    .Used in this way, it is another example of indirect speech act.
    It is , of course, possible to have humorous effects as a result of one person failing to recognize
    another person 's indirect speech act . Considering the following scene.
    A visitor to a city, carrying his luggage, looking lost, stops a passer-by:
    In this scene, the visitor uses a form which is normally associated
    with a question (Do you know...?) and the passer-by answers that question
    literally (I know...?) .Instead of respondig to the request , the passer-by replies to the question, treating
    an indirect speech act as if it is direct
    Perhaps the crucial distinction in the use of these two types of speech acts
    is based on the fact that indirect commands or request are simply considered
    more gentle or more polite in our society
    than direct commands. Exactly why they are considered more polite is based on some complex socila assumptions

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