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Verbal communication




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  • Occurs within, and serves to create a set of assumptions about the culture and what works within it justice, responsibility and free will the speaker’s personality and characteraudience characteristics


  • 1. Verbal Communication LECTURE
  • 2. There were these three men The first man walked into a bar The second man walked into a bar The third man didn’t He ducked!
  • 3. Focus Questions • What are the differences between grammatical language and talk in everyday use? • What frames your understanding of talk and gives it meaning? • What values are hidden in the speech you use? • How does everyday talk use relationships to frame meanings? • How do different types of talk work, and how do they connect to relationships? • What is talk style and how does it frame meaning?
  • 4. Understanding Meanings • Relationships frame the meaning of talk – Langue – formal, grammatically structured language use – Parole – informal, everyday use of talk (includes familiarity, context, and cultural assumptions)
  • 5. Understanding Meanings • What do we call what’s happening in this next clip?
  • 6. Polysemy • Multiple meanings for the same symbol • A feature of all communication • Meanings are constantly changing, creating ambiguity and uncertainty • Frames give “clues” to meaning
  • 7. Language Creates Frames • Naming – Arbitrary – Natural – Makes crucial distinctions – Sapir-Whorf Hypothesis • We can only know what we can name.
  • 8. Language Creates Frames • Naming
  • 9. Language Creates Frames • Naming • DEUTSCHER, G. (2010). Through the language glass: why the world looks different in other languages. New York, Metropolitan Books/Henry Holt and Co.
  • 10. Types of Verbal Meanings • Denotative – use of talk to identify or define objects • Connotative – use of talk to establish and understand the implications and deeper meanings of words
  • 11. Intentionality Frame • Intentionality – the belief that messages indicate a sender’s purposeful intentions • Relationships help us understand intentions based on our personal knowledge of others
  • 12. Words and Values • Words carry evaluations and present our values to others – God terms – powerful terms that are viewed positively – Devil terms – powerful terms that are viewed negatively
  • 13. Functions of Talk in Relationships • Instrumental – to make something happen; reveals a goal • Indexical – to indicate something about the relationship; content and relational elements – Hypertext – coded messages • Essential – to create the ‘reality’ of the relationship – immediacy – Politeness – Face wants
  • 14. Ways of Speaking • High-code and low-code • Speech style – Delivering content about the topic – Presenting yourself as a particular sort of person – Indexing a particular sort of relationship • Accommodation – Convergence – moves toward others – Divergence – moves away from others
  • 15. Narratives • Organized story that has a plot, an argument or a theme • Homo narrans – human as storyteller • Use elaborate frames to argue an identity of the storyteller and the relationship between the teller and the listener • Report events and offer justifications for “right action”
  • 16. Burke’s Pentad