Linguistics and the Human Sciences, Vol 6, No 1-3 (2010)

Pragmatic triangulation and misunderstanding: A prosodic perspective

Jesús Romero-Trillo
Issued Date: 13 Dec 2012

Abstract


This paper presents ‘pragmatic triangulation’ as the main tool used by speakers to avoid misunderstanding and reformulate ideas in speech, through Pragmatic Markers (PM’s), in the Spanish section of the Lindsei Corpus. The study will delve into the prosodic features used by native and non-native speakers of English in the prevention of misunderstanding to determine their functional differences in both groups of speakers. The paper will first make a theoretical account of the notion of understanding and misunderstanding and will discuss the characterization of Pragmatic Markers in the communication process. Secondly, the study will select the most frequent PM’s used by speakers for this purpose, and will describe its frequency and relevance in the corpus. And thirdly, the paper will look into the intonation and pragmatic asymmetry of the use of these elements by native and non-native speakers on the basis of statistical data. The final section will discuss the results of the analysis and will highlight the importance of invigorating this type of research for the benefit of contrastive and pedagogic studies.

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DOI: 10.1558/lhs.v6i1-3.43

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