The Sentence as Speech Act
from Reading Into Writing 1: English for Academic Purposes –
A Handbook for College Freshman English
by Concepcion Dadufalza
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• With every utterance referring to some object
or event, or expressing a perception, thought
or belief, the speaker or writer is also
performing an act: he is communicating an
intention or an attitude, which may or may
not be overtly expressed.
• Awareness of speech acts facilitates one’s
comprehension of meaning in reading and
• Knowledge of them enhances the
effectiveness of our ability to communicate in
both writing and speaking.
• “It’s so cold.”
• “I can’t read this. I don’t have my glasses.”
• “Don’t climb the peach.” “I’ll be careful.”
• “Unbelievable.” “I know.”
• “What are you doing here?”
• “What are YOU doing here?”
• “What ARE you doing here?”
What factors inform communicative
competence/knowledge of speech acts?
• Culture – traditions / practices / references
• Social norms / conventions / expectations
• Notions of civilized / proper / acceptable
• Frames of mind
• Social class
• Speech conventions
Diablo is an action role-playing hack-
and-slash video game developed by
Blizzard North and released by Blizzard
entertainment on December 31, 1996.
DESCRIBING / ATTRIBUTING
Set in the fictional Kingdom of
Khanduras, located in the world of
Sanctuary, Diablo has the player take
control of a lone hero battling to rid the
world of Diablo, the Lord of Terror.
The expansion pack released in 1997,
which was not created by Blizzard
Entertainment, is entitled Diablo Hellfire.
ENUMERATING / LISTING
Diablo has three character classes: the
warrior, the rogue, and the sorcerer.
The hero must kill the Skeleton King so
he can be released from his curse, kill
Archbishop Lazarus, and, eventually, fight
Players can either be aggressive towards,
or play co-operatively with, other
COMPARING / CONTRASTING
Players of the original Diablo release had
to painstakingly develop characters by
acquiring skill points throughout quests
and assigning these to strategically
chosen skills within 3 skill trees, whereas
the Diablo 3 release introduced
preprogrammed skills which appeared
automatically in the characters once skill
points have been earned.
JUDGING / EVALUATING /
ASSESSING / CRITICIZING
Despite the rather pale storyline,
watered-down quests and a fair amount
of necessary repetition, Diablo is a must
for anyone interested in just plain fun.