By Michael Fortescue
This essay is an try and increase a believable version of the cognitive techniques at the back of the habit exhibited by means of speaker-hearers in a selected discourse state of affairs.
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Additional resources for A Discourse Production Model For Twenty Questions
J) Responses to Self-Blame No, I mean what could you say ? Blame s e l f S h i f t Blame Accept Blame (of other) The choice here depends vr much on inter-personal factors such as politeness, friendliness, etc. There are presumably numerous ways in which the high level act of shifting the blame back to oneself (or away from the self-blamer) could be realized. The one chosen in the ex ample above is to cast doubt on the possibility of other courses of ac tion the self-blamer could have followed in the circumstances, via a rhetorical question.
G. the first example, where a 'Propose Action' is followed by a rhetorical 'Request Confirmation' (an attention-confirming device) and a (re-) statement of a fact helpful to the guesser. Only the first and third components are realizations of 'Give Help', the central one being an independently motivated discourse element introduced according to its own discoursal 'activation' conditions. Again we must allow for the hearer's computation of the primary force behind these utterances in as far as he may not recognize them as in any sense 'typical' realizations of 'Give Help' out of context (and they may not be on his own active 'repertoire' for the latter 34 act) .
The labels of the acts in the left-hand column can be regarded as describing the commu nicative needs served by the acts (as intended by the speaker). It is the combination of minimally adequate response set and propositional content (the central columns) that forms the basis of this classifica tion into distinct acts, parallelling the intuitive classification sup plied by column one. The last column gives only a very sketchy indica tion of some of the more common realizations of these acts (interroga tive forms only).
A Discourse Production Model For Twenty Questions by Michael Fortescue