Talk: Anna Papafragou - Informativeness in pragmatic development

Anna Papafragou, who is professor in the Department of Linguistics at the University of Pennsylvania, is a leading expert on experimental semantics and pragmatics, language acquisition, and language and cognition. 

Informativeness in pragmatic development 

Anna Papafragou

In this talk I explore the origins and development of pragmatic competence taking informativeness as a case study. I present a series of studies that seek to explain the complex pattern of children’s successes and failures in this area. I show that children’s pragmatic difficulties are linked to accessing relevant (and not simply informationally stronger) lexical alternatives during the computation of pragmatic inferences. I discuss the role of assessing the speaker’s epistemic state during the calculation of pragmatic inferences, and generalize the findings on children’s pragmatic competence beyond language to non-linguistic symbols. I conclude by sketching an integrated view of the development of pragmatic abilities that connects pragmatics to non-linguistic cognition.  

Tags: Linguistics, Pragmatics
Published Dec. 16, 2021 1:28 PM - Last modified Feb. 25, 2022 9:54 PM