Publication details [#58229]

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Article in book
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This introduction to the Handbook of pragmatics handles its formative traditions; its topic range and delimitation problems; its dimension, perspectives, methodology and evidence; and a functional perspective on language. There is a bias for interpreting pragmatics as a general functional (not to be misinterpreted) perspective on (any aspect of) language (use), i.e. as an (interdisciplinary) approach to language which reckons with the full complicacy of its cognitive, social, and cultural (i.e. ‘meaningful’) functioning in people’s lives. The three essentially inseverable notions of variability, negotiability and adaptability are only interconnected features of the functionality of language, required to understand the constant communicative choices made in speaking and interpreting speech.