Course details


Introduction to pragmatics: meaning and cognition

SS 2021 Prof. Dr. Michael Franke ONLINE
B.Sc modules:
CS-BWP-CL - (Computational) Linguistics
KOGW-WPM-CL - Computational Linguistics
M.Sc modules:
CC-MWP-CL - Computational Linguistics
CS-MWP-CL - (Computational) Linguistics

Course description: Pragmatics is a branch of linguistics and philosophy of language that studies how context contributes to linguistic meaning. It deals with meanings as communicated by a speaker (adressant) and interpreted by a listener (addressee) in a given communicative situation. Pragmatics thus extends its inquiry beyond the semantic content of meaning towards the problem of speaker intentions and pragmatic reasoning. This course offers a basic introduction to the field of pragmatics. During the course, we will cover various topics within the field, including implicature, presupposition, deixis, (indirect) speech act. We will also consider pragmatic intuitions about the phenomena of metaphor and lying. Course objectives: Students taking the course will acquire core concepts of pragmatics, get acquainted with some of the prominent researchers in the field, gain an understanding of what pragmatics aspires to bring into linguistic theory (especially to semantics), and see why pragmatics is indispensable as long as one strives to investigate linguistic meaning. The course can be useful not only to those majoring in (computational) linguistics but also to psychologists and philosophers interested in the subject of language and cognition. Some organizational info: The course will comprise both lectures and seminars. In lectures, theoretical background will be provided on a variety of topics, while in seminars, some classic and more recent papers will be read, presented, and discussed. The course will be held over a period of four weeks in the block scheduling from 30 August until 26 September 2021. Schedule: Tuesdays and Thursdays: 10 am – 2 pm (except where indicated otherwise) August 31 (12-12), September 3, September 7, September 10, September 14, September 17, September 21 (10-12) Final exam: September 28, 12 noon – 2 pm