Volume 7, Issue 1
  • ISSN 2214-3157
  • E-ISSN: 2214-3165
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Drawing on insights borrowed from Mey’s pragmatic act theory (2001) and Sharifian’s framework of Cultural Linguistics (20112017a), this study attempts to explore the pragmemes associated with the speech act of responding to (lit. pain of the heart) in Persian and the cultural pragmatic schemas underlying them. can be described as the verbal communication of suffering, sadness, or hardships to others, mainly for the purpose of discharging negative emotions, finding relief, and strengthening social bonds. This study argues that the language used by speakers of Persian to respond to can be categorized into three groups of pragmemes. Pragmemes, according to Mey (2010: 2884), are defined as “general situational prototypes of [pragmatic] acts that are capable of being executed in a particular situation or cluster of situations.” Besides, it is illustrated that the identified pragmemes cannot be correctly used and interpreted unless the interlocutors are aware of the cultural pragmatic schemas informing them. A cultural pragmatic schema is described as the (assumed) shared knowledge by members of a cultural group, which is reflected in different features of their language (Sharifian 2017a2017b). Data for the present study was collected from a number of online forums, where speakers of Persian communicate their to other users. As a cultural insider, the author has also drawn on personal observation and insights from some Persian literary works. Qualitative analysis of the data revealed that interlocutors mainly employ three pragmemes to respond to . These pragmemes include , and . Each pragmeme has the potential to be expressed in a variety of ways (practs), depending on the context. The speech act of responding to in Persian and the associated pragmemes and practs draw on the three cultural pragmatic schemas of , and , which have their roots in religion.


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