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SPEECH ACT Austin (in Mey, 1993: 110-112) said that in conveying utterance, someone is also doing an “act”. It means that in expressing what they feel, someone not only produce an utterance that has grammatical and word structure, but also they create an act by saying that utterance. This act can be in the form of promising, ordering, apologizing, thanking, and so on. Austin (in Mey, 1993: 110-112) divided the action performed by producing an utterance will consists of three related acts that is produced by the speaker. Those \three related acts are locutionary act, illocutionary act, and perlocutionary act. 1. Locutionary act Locutionary act can be defined as the act of saying something. It means that the utterance we produce is the basic act of utterance, or producing a meaningful linguistics expression. 2. Illocutionary act. Basically, when we produce an utterance, we don’t just produce well-formed utterance with no purpose. We form an utterance with some kind of function in our mind. This is that we call illocutionary act. We might utter something to make statement, to request, or to apologize. 3. Perlocutionary act It is an utterance that’s produced by the speaker to arouse an effect to the hearer by saying something. So we create an utterance simply not only saying something without intending any effect. We can see this example to explain more about locutionary act, illocutionary act, and perlocutionary act. (1) It is raining outside The locutionary act is the statement that at that time, there was raining outside.
or a promise. the term “speech act” is generally interpreted to mean the illocutionary force of an utterance. and it will represent the different illocutionary force. Of these three dimension. Indeed. If the illocutionary act is explicitly shown at the utterance. it can be called performative verb. the most discussed is illocutionary force. because the verb promise and warn are explicitly show the illocutionary force.. but they sometimes describe the speech act being performed... The same locutionary act can count as some different analysis. someone will bring an umbrella or someone will cancel the invitation. A: I am asking you__ can I talk to her? B: And I am telling you___SHE’S NOT HERE! 2 . The problem that we face now is that. I warn you…. like this dialog: A: Can I talk to Marry? B: No. for example the speaker at that time when saying that utterance. Example: I promise you that…. The utterance above can be very clear to the hearer. The illocutionary act from the utterance number (2) can be a prediction. or asks someone to bring an umbrella. (2) I’ll see you later. The perlocutionary act from that utterance will be.. a warning. IFIDs IFIDs mean some device to distinguish which illocutionary act which is meant by the speaker. speakers don’t always perform their speech act so explicitly. she’s not here. he/she denies an invitation. It is used by the hearer. The illocutionary act from that utterance can be varies. how can the hearer know which illocutionary act is represented by the utterance above? That question has been addressed by considering two things. those are Illocutionary Force Indicating Devices and felicity condition. But sometimes.
But if there is no performative mentioned. There are some precondition on speech acts in everyday context among ordinary people. 3 . they are: 1. Are you going (I ask you if you are going) Meanwhile. Felicity Conditions Felicity conditions are certain expected or appropriate circumstances. or being nonsensical. Content conditions In order to count as a particular type of speech act. we can use other IFIDs to identify that utterance. General condition on the participants It means that the participant of the conversation can understand the language being used and they are not playing acting. 2. both of the speaker describe the illocutionary act of their utterance. then it won’t be appropriate. an utterance must contain certain features. as shown in the different versions of the same basic element below. If the speaker isn’t a judge. and intonation. it means that this condition for the performance of a speech act to be recognized as intended. You’re going! (I tell you that you are going) b. We can see in this example below: I sentence you to six months in prison The utterance above is appropriate if the speaker has a profession as a judge (when he/she in a court room). You’re going? (I request confirmation about you are going) c. we can use other devices to distinguish the illocutionary act such as lower the intonation. (3) a.In the dialogue above. indicating that we are angry. Other IFIDs which can be identified are word order. stress. or maybe use the higher tone of our voice.
Explicit performatives: a speech act containing a performative verb. In using declarations. Referee: you are out! c. Jury Foreman: we find that the defendant guilty. the speaker changes the world via words. Performative Hypothesis Performative Hypothesis is a proposal that underlying every utterance. 4 . Priest: I now pronounce you husband and wife. 4. Sincerity condition Requirements on the genuine intention of a speaker in order for an utterance to count as a particular speech act. there are five types of functions performed by speech act 1. A further content condition for a promise requires that the future event will a future act of the speaker. Implicit performatives: a speech act without a performative verb.For example: for both a promise and warning. 3. Declarations Declarations are those kind of speech acts that change the world via their utterance. Speech Act Clasiification Generally. a. Preparatory conditions Specific requirement prior to an utterance in order for it to count as a particular speech acts. there is a clause with a verb that identifies the speech act. a requirement that the utterance commits the speaker to the act performed. Essential condition In performing speech act. the content of the utterance must be about a future event. b. 5.
4. Expressives Expressives are those kinds of speech acts that state what the speaker feels. Could you lend me your book? c. I am really glad to hear that. They express what the speaker wants. c. b. c. Please pas me the salt. They express psychological states and can be statement of pleasure. 5.2. Don’t turn on the lamp. Agatha Christie didn’t write about Evolution. order. 3. Well. joy or sorrow. a. They express what the speaker intend. b. pledges. dislikes. it’s great idea I think. I am going to go dinner with her. suggestions. b. request. likes. I’ll be back as soon as possible. Directives Directives are those kinds of speech acts that speaker use to get someone else to do something. They can be in the form of promises. Representatives Representatives are those kinds od speech acts that state what the speaker believes to be the case or not. The weather is nice today. a. a. They can be in the form of commands. We will not accept that letter. a. Sorry for that accident. 5 . threats. Commissives Commisives are those kinds of speech acts that the speaker use to commit themselves to some future action. pain. The earth is flat b. c. refusal.
there will be two possibilities of the form of the utterance. Whenever there is a direct relationship between a structure and a function. But. it is functioning as direct speech act. When it is used to make a statement. while the others is an indirect speech act. It is hot in here. All of the utterance a-c is declarative sentence. See this example below. that is the speaker wants the addressee not to stand in front of the TV. but we also expect action. Different structure can have a same function. You’re standing in front of the TV. a. The music is too loud. 6 . there are some common types of indirect speech act which has the form of interrogative but it is not typically used to ask a question. Do you have to stand in front of the TV? c. only the sentence in (a) is imperative that represent direct speech act. It’s cold outside. b. So. that is an indirect speech act. Move out the way! b. we call it as a direct speech act. a. like in the example below. c. then we have an indirect speech act. we don’t expect only an answer. Whenever there is an indirect relationship between a structure and a function. that is a direct speech act. You’d make a better door than a window.Direct and Indirect Speech Act When we produce an utterance. it means that when we produce the interrogative form. it is functioning as indirect speech act. But. All of the utterance has same function. if we produce a declarative to make a request. The speaker wants the addressee not to stand in front of television. d. In English. if we produce a declarative sentence that is used to make statement. But when it is used to make a command or request. It can be in the form of direct speech act and indirect speech act.
George. Mey. L. Pragmatics. Oxford : Oxford University Press. 1994. S. References Levinson.a. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. Oxford : Blackwell. Searle. C. Pragmatics. London : Cambridge University Press. Jacob. 1969. Yule. Pragmatics : An Introduction. 1993. 7 . 1996. Would you open this for me? c. John R. Do you mind not smoking here? Indirect speech acts are generally associated with greater politeness in English than direct speech act. Could you pass the sugar? b. Speech Act.
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