Grice Coopeative Principle

Only available on StudyMode
  • Topic: Paul Grice, Gricean maxims, Pragmatics
  • Pages : 3 (746 words )
  • Download(s) : 132
  • Published : April 25, 2013
Open Document
Text Preview
Grice advanced the notions of cooperative principle and implicature together with Gricean maxims of conversation to illustrate how people are able to communicate with each other given that their utterances could be comprehended in many possible ways. The underlying assumption of Grice’s cooperative principle is that people tend to be cooperative in most conversational exchanges in order to construct meaningful conversation. The cooperative principle, as stated in Grice’s “Logic and Conversation” (1975):

“Make your conversational contribution such as is required, at the stage at which it occurs, by the accepted purpose or direction of the talk exchange in which you are engaged” further supports by four maxims of conversation that interlocutors are expected to obey: The quantity maxim

Make your contribution as informative as is required, but don’t say too much or too little. Make the forceful statement you can.
The quality maxim
Do not say what you believe to be false
Do not say that for which you lack adequate evidence.
The relation maxim
Be relevant. (Stick to the topic.)
The manner maxim
Avoid obscurity of expression.
Avoid ambiguity.
Be clear, orderly and brief (avoid unnecessary prolixity) For example,
Tom:Can you lend me some money?
Peter:No.
This dialogue obeys the above maxims. Peter gives adequate information, is truthful, relevant, and clear. However, consider the following example,
Tom: Can you lend me some money?
Peter:I have to settle a long list of payments this month.
Instead of saying ‘Yes’ or No, Peter’s statement is not an answer to Tom’s question. Nevertheless, Tom will immediately interpret Peter’s statement as meaning ‘No’. Peter’s statement flouted the maxim of relation. Thus Peter’s answer isn’t merely a statement about his current situation, it contains an implicature. For Grice, implicature is the capacity to draw inferences and understand implications. Sometimes, implication can be an...
tracking img