Elicited Data

Authored by: J. César Félix-Brasdefer , Maria Hasler-Barker

The Routledge Handbook of Pragmatics

Print publication date:  January  2017
Online publication date:  January  2017

Print ISBN: 9780415531412
eBook ISBN: 9781315668925
Adobe ISBN:


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The Oxford Dictionary of English defines the verb elicit as an action that evokes or draws out (a reaction, answer, or fact) from someone, as in eliciting a response with a question. Pragmatics researchers often elicit a response from participants with predesigned tasks that are intended to examine particular aspects of speakers’ pragmatic knowledge. Pragmatic knowledge, according to Leech (1983) and Thomas (1983), is comprised of two components: (1) pragmalinguistic competence – knowledge about and performance of the conventions of language use or the linguistic resources available in a given language that convey ‘particular illocutions’ in contextually appropriate situations (Leech 1983: 11), and (2) sociopragmatic competence – knowledge about and performance consistent with the social norms in specific situations in a given society, as well as familiarity with variables of social power and social distance. To analyse data from a pragmatic perspective, numerous researchers have drawn on methodology from the fields of linguistic anthropology, psychology, neurolinguistics, sociolinguistics, discourse analysis, second language acquisition, and sociology (Ericsson and Simon 1993; Duranti 1997; Cohen 1998, 2012; Davis and Henze 1998; Kasper 2000; Noveck and Sperber 2004; Mackey and Gass 2005; Cohen and Macaro 2010; Félix-Brasdefer 2010, 2015; Meibauer and Steinbach 2011).

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