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Theory of Pragmatics: Understanding Language Use in Everyday Life


Oct 21, 2023

Pragmatics ImageSource: bing.com

Have you ever wondered why people say what they say and how we understand each other? This is where the theory of pragmatics comes in. Pragmatics is the study of how people use language in context and how meaning is conveyed through language in everyday life. In this article, we will explore the basics of pragmatics and how it helps us understand language use in relaxed Indonesia language.

What is Pragmatics?

Pragmatics DefinitionSource: bing.com

Pragmatics is a branch of linguistics that deals with the study of language use in context. It helps us understand how people use language to communicate their intended meaning in different situations. Pragmatics looks beyond the literal meaning of words and focuses on how context, tone, and body language affect communication.

For example, if someone says “It’s hot in here,” the literal meaning is that the temperature is high. However, the pragmatic meaning could be that the person wants someone to open a window or turn on a fan. This is because the intended meaning is influenced by the context, such as the temperature in the room.

Why is Pragmatics Important?

Pragmatics ImportanceSource: bing.com

Pragmatics is important because it helps us understand how language is used in everyday life. It allows us to interpret language beyond its literal meaning and to understand the social and cultural contexts in which language is used. Without pragmatics, we would not be able to understand the nuances of language use and how to effectively communicate with others.

Pragmatic Competence

Pragmatic CompetenceSource: bing.com

Pragmatic competence refers to the ability to use language effectively in context. It involves understanding the social and cultural norms of language use and being able to interpret language beyond its literal meaning. Pragmatic competence is important because it allows us to communicate effectively with others and to avoid misunderstandings.

Pragmatic Principles

Pragmatic PrinciplesSource: bing.com

There are several principles that govern language use in pragmatics. These include:

  • Cooperative principle: People assume that others are cooperative in communication and that they will try to cooperate in making the conversation successful.
  • Grice’s maxims: These are four principles of communication that help ensure cooperation. They include the maxim of quality (be truthful), quantity (provide enough information), relevance (be on topic), and manner (be clear and concise).
  • Speech acts: These are the actions that speakers perform when they use language. Examples include making requests, giving commands, and asking questions.

Pragmatics in Relaxed Indonesia Language

Indonesian LanguageSource: bing.com

In relaxed Indonesia language, pragmatics plays an important role in communication. Indonesians have a strong sense of politeness and respect, which influences language use. For example, Indonesians often use indirect language when making requests or giving orders in order to avoid being too direct or confrontational.

Another aspect of pragmatics in relaxed Indonesia language is the use of honorifics, which are words that show respect to the person being spoken to. Indonesians use different honorifics depending on the age, social status, and relationship with the person they are speaking to. For example, “bapak” is used to address an older or more senior person, while “adik” is used to address a younger or less senior person.


Pragmatics is a fascinating field that helps us understand how language is used in everyday life. By studying pragmatics, we can better understand how to effectively communicate with others and avoid misunderstandings. In relaxed Indonesia language, pragmatics plays an important role in communication due to the strong sense of politeness and respect in Indonesian culture.

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