dialogue Matisse

Content summary

Building on the phenomena and theories studied in the Introduction to Pragmatics and Semantics lecture, this course will provide further elaboration of the issues arising in the modelling of language use during interaction.  Through engagement with the course materials, students will gain an appreciation of the analysis of online, observable behaviours for building models of the accomplishment and maintenance of social conceptual schemata and action coordination. You will learn how to develop methods to approach and analyse spoken language genres and you will develop your powers of observation, your attention to detail, and your analytical skills. 

We will look at how linguistic meaning, not only relates to the world around us, but also is adapted, negotiated, and coordinated among people in conversation. We will discuss basic concepts involved in situated language processing: perceptual judgements, action, interaction, situated dialogue, grounding, and embodiment. We will then investigate social linguistic phenomena that are so familiar they usually escape our notice, for example, asking for clarifications, agreements/disagreements, corrections, and shared utterances. We will see that these phenomena are highly structured, intricately designed, and extremely significant in our everyday lives and the organization of the social world. We will study the fine-grained structure of such talk-in-interaction and the wider conversational practices people use to accomplish social actions in everyday and institutional settings. Starting with dialogue phenomena, we will provide analyses within models that link syntax, lexical semantics, semantic ontology, pragmatics, and conversational interaction patterns. The psychological and philosophical consequences of this approach for language acquisition, evolution, and artificial intelligence will also be discussed.