Sven Jansson

Used Linguistics


30/5 2011

Pragmatics in Comedy

I actually. Introduction.


The aim of this kind of paper is usually to see how personas in various reveals flout, disobey and infringe Grice's 4 maxims to be able to create connaissance. The shows I will be applying are Little Britain, Underlying part and Blackadder. Terminology.

Herbert Paul Grice is considered one of the founders of the modern research of pragmatics, which deals with expressed that means and implied meaning, basically what is said and what is meant. Grice claimed that we now have two varieties of implicature, put simply the part of an utterance that may be meant but is not strictly stated out loud: conventional implicature and conversational implicature (Thomas 1995: 57). Since this paper treats comedy it can mainly focus on conversational implicature. Grice's four maxims will be, if not really rules, nevertheless way of ways to allow us to say items indirectly in order to avoid discomfort the moment saying uncomfortable things as well as to imply something without having to actually take a immediate stand or viewpoint. By strictly following a maxims, the conversation involved is fairly straight forward in fact it is not hard to find the implicature. However, when one flouts you are more indirect and therefore creates an implicature. Grice's four maxims will be:

Quantity: Info. Not too much, nor inadequate.

Quality: Real truth. Do not sit.

Relation: Relevance. Stick to the topic.

Manner: Quality. Be brief and organised and avoid unknown expressions. Below the Supportive Principle, that has been also presented by Grice, very important. The Cooperative Theory means that we assume that anyone we are talking to speaks in good faith and has no goal of laying. So , once someone says something we realize is wrong, as for model in Thomas's example of the ambulance drivers getting vomited on and exclaiming: " Superb, that's really great! That's really made my Xmas! ” (Thomas 1995: 55) We know that scarcely anyone enjoys getting be sick all over these people so all of us search for a great implicature, the actual ambulance man really designed, in this case that Christmas was more or less wrecked. This would be a failure to observe the saying of quality since it was intentional; we know, or at least expect that the ambulance man would not enjoy the situation. Grice was most thinking about situations in which the speaker deliberately fails to see a saying, not with the intention of deceiving or lying but instead to make the fan base look for a meaning that is different from the expressed which means. This is attached in with the conversational implicature and the process is called " flouting a maxim” (Thomas 1995: 65). Another example of flouting the maxim regards would be as following: A: Do you know what time it really is?

B: The bananas want fresh today.

A very straight-forward example although clearly show how the maxim of relationship (and also manner by bluntly disregarding the question) is flouted since the listener does not give an answer that is at all tightly related to the question. The implicature here could be " I have no clue, let's discuss something else” or perhaps the listener can be ashamed of not owning a watch. Grice also speaks of " breaking a maxim” (Thomas 95: 72), which can be the intentional failure to see a maxim in order to deceive someone. Jenny Thomas shows the best example together with the cheating partner who assures her spouse that she is not discovering another guy, while in reality she is viewing another woman (Thomas 1995: 73). When ever violating a maxim, the utterance typically contains a truth to be able to mislead the hearer through the truth. And finally Grice addresses about infringing a saying (Thomas 95: 74), which stems from the speaker's unintentional failure to see a saying, thus generating undesired implicatures. This is most frequent when the speaker is a novice of a language or is suffering from a cognitive impairment of some sort.

II. Method.

I have selected various Shows and a show and analysed some of the funny parts of the dialogue by a...


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