Definitions Ch. 5&6

Definitions Ch. 5&6 - Chapter 5 – Language ...

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Unformatted text preview: Chapter 5 – Language 1. Abstraction Ladder – A range of more to less abstract terms describing an event or object. High level abstractions are convenient ways of generalizing about similarities between several objects, people, ideas, or events. o High ­level abstractions on the abstraction ladder can help communicators find face ­ saving ways to avoid confrontations and embarrassment by being deliberately unclear. 2. Ambiguous Language – Language that consists of words and phrases that have more than one commonly accepted definition o The different ways people may interpret the word ‘love’ is an example of ambiguous language that can lead to quite serious misunderstandings between people. 3. ‘But’ Statement – The ability to project oneself onto another person’s point of view in an attempt to experience his or her thoughts and feelings. o ‘But’ statements can be a face ­saving strategy worth using at times since the word ‘but’ has the effect of cancelling the thought that precedes it. 4. Convergence – The process of adapting one’s speech style to that of others with whom the communicator wants to identify. o When two or more people feel equally positive about one another, their linguistic convergence will be mutual. But when communicators want or need approval, they often adapt their speech to accommodate the other person’s style, trying to say the ‘right thing’ or speak in a way that will help them fit in. 5. Divergence – The process of adapting one’s speech in ways that emphasize differences between the speaker and others with whom the communicator wants to distance themselves from. o When Chinese students living in Canada – even if they are fluent in English – choose to speak Chinese to differentiate themselves from other Asian ethnicities, they are adopting the strategy of divergence. 6. Emotive Language – Language that expresses the sender’s attitude rather than simply offering an objective description. o Relational climates suffer when communicators use emotive language because of the lack of neutral terms used to describe others’ behavior. 7. Euphemism – Innocuous terms substituted for blunt ones. o Euphemisms are often used when people want to soften the vulgarity of bodily functions such as saying “I have to use the washroom” instead of “I need to urinate”. 8. Factual Statement – Claims that can be verified as true or false. o Oftentimes, speakers antagonize themselves because they confuse their own opinions as a factual statement. 9. High context Culture – A culture that relies heavily on verbal and non verbal cues to maintain social harmony. o Rather than upset others by speaking directly, communicators in these societies learn to discover meaning from the context in which a message is delivered, that is, the non ­verbal behavior of the speaker, the history of the relationship, and the general social rules that govern interaction between people. 10. ‘I’ Language – A statement that describes the speaker’s reaction to another person’s behavior without making judgments about its worth. o When people are using ‘I’ language, it is clear that they have stronger opinions about certain things because of the directness of the language. 11. Inferential Statement – Conclusions arrived at from an interpretation of evidence. o Conflicts resulting from confusions between inferential statements and facts can be avoided by the speaker using perception checking. 12. ‘It’ Statement – A statement in which ‘it’ replaces the personal pronoun ‘I’, making the statement less direct and more evasive. o A habit of using ‘it’ statements is an unconscious way to avoid taking a position on certain things because it is less direct and more evasive. 13. Linguistic Determinism –The idea that language determines perceptions and thought. o According to the linguistic determinism perspective, it is impossible for speakers of different languages to view the world identically. 14. Linguistic Relativism – The idea that language exerts a strong influence on perceptions and thought. o An example for the linguistic relativism perspective is the Mandarin term “xong ­di”. The term is used among close friends (usually male) to show the importance of their friendships. 15. Low context Culture – A culture that uses language primarily to express thoughts, feelings, and ideas as clearly and logically as possible. o Members of a low ­context culture take the meaning of a statement from primarily just the words spoken. 16. Opinion Statement – Statements based on the speaker’s beliefs. o We use opinion statements in everyday conversations and present them as if they were facts, and in doing so we invite an unnecessary argument. 17. Phonological Rule – Linguistic rule that govern how sounds are combined to form words. o The word champagne has the same meaning in French and English but is pronounced differently because the languages have different phonological rules. 18. Powerless Speech Mannerism – Forms of speech that express to others a lack of power in the speaker: hedges, hesitations, intensifiers, and so on. o Even a single type of powerless speech mannerism appears to make a person seem less authoritative or socially attractive. 19. Pragmatic rules – Rules that govern the interpretation of language in terms of its social context. o The pragmatic rules followed at a casual function can be quite different from those followed at a formal dinner. 20. Relative Language – Words that gain meaning by comparison. o When a person is explaining the difficulty of an exam by comparison to a past one, they are using relative language. 21. Sapir Whorf hypothesis– The idea that people who speak different languages organize and view their world differently. o A good example of the Sapir ­Whorf hypothesis would be the how the Hopi Native American language describes the world as being constantly in process without distinguishing between nouns and verbs. 22. Semantic Rule – Linguistic rule govern the meaning of statements in a language, as opposed to its structure. o Without semantic rules, communication would be impossible, because each of us would use symbols in unique ways, unintelligible to others. 23. Static Evaluation – The usually mistaken assumption that people or things are totally consistent and unchanging (descriptions that contain the word ‘is’). o Many people are annoyed when subjected to static evaluation because they know that their current behavior is not completely consistent and unchanging. 24. Syntactic Rule – Linguistic rule that govern the way symbols can be arranged, as opposed to the meaning of those symbols. o Although most of us are not able to describe the syntactic rules that govern our language, it’s easy to recognize their existence by noticing how odd a statement that violates them appears. 25. ‘We’ Language – The use of first person plural pronouns to include others, either appropriately or inappropriately. o Sometimes using the ‘we’ language can cause the speaker to seem presumptuous since the pronoun ‘we’ is implying that the issue is important to not only the speaker, but the receiver of the message as well. 26. ‘You’ Language – A statement that expresses or implies a judgment of the other person. o ‘You’ language can often arouse defensiveness as it is implying that the speaker is qualified to judge the target; and most listeners are not willing to accept this notion, even if the judgment is correct. Chapter 6 – Non verbal Communication 27. Barrier behaviors – Strategies to create or fix a barrier between ourselves and other people such as avoiding eye contact. o A good example of a barrier behavior is the reduction or elimination of eye contact when an individual feels their personal space is being invaded. 28. Chronemics – The study of how people use and structure time. o An interesting area in Chronemics would be the correlation between waiting time and social status. 29. Disfluences – Non linguistic verbalizations; for example, um, er, ah. o A good public speaker usually manages to avoid, almost entirely, the use of Disfluences in their messages. 30. Emblem – Deliberate non verbal behavior with precise meaning known to virtually all members of a cultural group. o A commonly used emblem in western society is the nodding of the head up and down to indicate ‘yes’. 31. Illustrator – Non verbal behavior that accompanies and supports verbal messages. o Sigh’s after finishing a strenuous task are usually illustrators of relief by the communicator. 32. Intimate distance– The first of Hall’s zones that begins with skin contact and ranges out to about 45 cm. o We usually let people who are emotionally close to us, and then mostly private situations, within our intimate distance. 33. Kenesics – The study of how people communicate through bodily movements. o People who have a firm grasp of kinesics are more likely to be able to ‘read’ other peoples’ moods and interests. 34. Manipulator – Movements in which one part of the body grooms, massages, rubs, holds, pinches, picks, or otherwise manipulates another part. o Although social rules discourage performing manipulators in public, when people are in a comfortable and relaxed setting, they will be more likely to fiddle with their hair or clean their fingernails. 35. Non verbal communication – Messages expressed by non linguistic means; they can include vocal communication but not language. o Since the majority of the emotional impact of a message comes from non ­verbal communication, it is no wonder that the meanings of emails and text messages are often misinterpreted. 36. Paralanguage – Non linguistic means of vocal expression; for example, rate, pitch, and tone. o Paralanguage allows for many meanings given to the same word(s) or phrase(s) spoken. 37. Personal distance – The second special zone ranging from 45 cm at its closest point to 1.2 meters at its farthest o Communicators with close personal relationships usually converse within each other’s personal distances. 38. Personal space – A method for getting rid of debilitative feelings while remaining sensitive to the more facilitative emotions. o I feel like the idea of personal space is a rather modern invention resulting from the isolated electronic environment we’ve been heavily subjected to in the past few years. This has been causing the personal space of individuals to grow larger in size because we are losing comfort with more personal interactions. 39. Proxemics – The study of how people and animals use space. o A good understanding of proxemics can allow one to avoid certain conflicts with people by knowing where the personal space boundaries lie from people to people. 40. Public distance – The farthest zone, running outward from 3 meters. o It can be assumed that speakers who choose a public distance when more closeness is possible is not usually interested in a dialogue. 41. Regulator – Non verbal behaviors that control verbal interaction. o An example of a regulator is the drawl on the last syllable or the stressed syllable in a clause that indicates the speaker has finished talking and is ready to yield to a listener. 42. Social distance – The third zone that ranges from 1.2 meters to about 3 meters at the outside. o Reducing social distances by doctors convey warmth and concern towards their medical patients. 43. Territory – A stationary area claimed by a person or animal. o People usually care more about a territory over which they have exclusive rights, such as their bedroom, than about a territory in a public area, such as their seat in class. ...
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This note was uploaded on 01/26/2012 for the course ECON 401 taught by Professor Burbidge,john during the Fall '08 term at Waterloo.

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