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Charles Denroche – Written Discourse – Project –

Communication is the process of sending and receiving messages through verbal or

nonverbal means: speech (oral communication), writing (written communication),
signs, signals or behaviour.

“The various communication situations share some basic components: a context; a

source or sender; a receiver; messages; noise; and channels, or models.” (M.
Redmond, Communication: Theories and Applications Houghton, 2000)

An Instinctive Tendency: As Horne Tooke, one of the founders of the noble science
of philology, observes, language is an art, like brewing or baking; but writing would
have been a better simile. It certainly is not a true instinct, for every language has to
be learnt. It differs, however, widely form all ordinary arts, fro man has an instinctive
tendency to speak, as we see in the babble of our young children; whilst no child ahs
an instinctive tendency to brew, bake, or write. Moreover, no philologist now
supposes that any language has been deliberately invented; it has been slowly and
unconsciously developed by many steps.” (Charles Darwin, The Descent of Man,

“Language can also be compared with a sheet of paper: thought is the front and the
sound the back; one cannot cut the front without cutting the back at the same time;
likewise in language, one can neither divide sound from thought nor thought from
sound.” (Ferdinand Saussure, Course in General Linguistics, 1916)

Pragmatics is about the shared knowledge that we all must use as a tool to
understand words. Most English readers do not read Latin, Greek etc. They will not
understand a single word of what is written if they have no knowledge of the
language. If an author wants to show a foreign text, he or she, out of courtesy to the
intended reader must give a translation. Another example. If, during a conversation, I
casually and without explanation, use the word ‘theory’, a non-scientist will
understand this as ‘just an idea’. Without a shared world view, I cannot communicate
to my listener that I mean by theory ‘a well constructed set of logical argument that
can be tested by experiment to determine their scientific value.’

Pragmatics, in the langue sciences, is the study of how real-world and shred
knowledge impacts on the way we think we understand each other.
Pragmatic philosophy overlaps nicely with pragmatic language studies, so there
should be no confusion between the two uses of the one term.
1. What is language?

2. What is verbal communication?

3. Message more than that encoded in the text?

4. Pragmatics?

5. Conceptual Metaphor

6. Frames/Scripts

7. Genres/Text Type