The utterances "Clean up the kitchen, will you?", "Would you be so kind as to clean the kitch-en?", "Bit dirty in here, don't you think?" can all be understood as attempts by a speaker to get a potential hearer to clean the kitchen. Apart from this similarity are there any differences between these utterances? Would you utter each in all contexts? Or would you prefer specific strategies in different situations? Why do we prefer to be indirect in some situations and direct in others? Native speakers are able to make split second decisions about which linguistic strategy to use in a specific context. However, the development of such sociolinguistic and pragmatic competences cannot be taken for granted in foreign language learners. In fact, it is usually a lengthy process that requires increased attention of learners and their teachers. In this seminar, we will explore how pragmatic competence can be defined and measured in language learners and how language learners have been found to differ pragmatically from native speakers. Since pragmatic errors have the potential of causing severe irritation between interlocutors, it is vital that language learners not only learn to produce grammatically well-formed sentences and have a good pronunciation but also are aware of different pragmatic norms in different languages and become pragmatically competent speakers of English.
On successful completion of this module, students should be able to: • understand and explain the most important theories in pragmatics • discuss and critically evaluate studies on pragmatic competence in language learners • explain, apply and critically evaluate different methods of data collection in interlanguage pragmatics • analyse and contrast data from language learners with data from native speakers of Eng-lish in terms of their pragmatic competence
The course is part of admission "MM Linguistik & Literatur".