Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation

Lodz Papers in Pragmatics

Founded by Cap, Piotr

Editor-in-Chief: Chilton, Paul / Kopytowska, Monika

2 Issues per year

Access brought to you by:

provisional account

Open Access

Bronislaw Malinowski and Linguistic Pragmatics

Gunter Senft1

Max-Planck-Institute for Psycholinguistics, Nijmegen1

This content is open access.

Citation Information: Lodz Papers in Pragmatics. Volume 3, Issue -1, Pages 79–96, ISSN (Online) 1898-4436, ISSN (Print) 1895-6106, DOI: 10.2478/v10016-007-0006-7, August 2007

Publication History

Published Online:
2007-08-06

Bronislaw Malinowski and Linguistic Pragmatics

In 1923 Bronislaw Malinowski repeated his claim for an "Ethnolinguistic theory" which he enforced 1920 in his first linguistic paper and which became the guideline for his "ethnographic theory of language." In 1997 the linguist William Foley published his monograph "Anthropological Linguistics—An Introduction"; and in the same year the anthropologist Alessandro Duranti published his monograph "Linguistic Anthropology." It seems that with the publication of these two standard textbooks the interdisciplinary field of "ethnolinguistics" has finally gained its due importance within the disciplines of anthropology and linguistics. Bill Foley states in his textbook that "the boundary between pragmatics and anthropological linguistics or sociolinguistics is impossible to draw at present." So if we recognize Bronislaw Malinowski not only as one of the founders of modern social anthropology but also as one of the founding fathers of anthropological linguistics, we should have a closer look at Malinowski's importance for pragmatics in general. This paper presents Malinowski's contributions to the ethnographic theory of language, assesses his role as an apologist of anthropological linguistics, and discusses his influence (not only) on (new) developments in linguistic pragmatics.

Keywords: Bronislaw Malinowski; ethnographic theory of language; anthropological linguistics; sociolinguistics; language-culture-cognition; fieldwork; theory and practice

  • Agar, Michael. Language Shock-Understanding the Culture of Conversation. New York: William Morrow and Co., 1994.

  • Austin, John. How to Do Things with Words. Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1962.

  • Bauman, Richard. "Text and discourse in anthropological linguistics." In International Encyclopedia of Linguistics, edited by William Bright, 145-147. New York: OUP, 1992.

  • Bloomfield, Leonard. Language. London: Allen & Unwin (2nd revised edition), 1935.

  • Bohnemeyer, Juergen, Ann Kelly and Rasha Abdel Rahman, eds. Max-Planck-Institute for Psycholinguistics Annual Report 2002. Nijmegen: MPI for Psycholinguistics, 2002.

  • Brown, Penelope and Stephen Levinson. "Universals in language usage: Politeness phenomena." In Questions and Politeness. Strategies in Social Interaction, edited by Esther Goody, 56-289. Cambridge: CUP, 1978.

  • Brown, Penelope, Gunter Senft and Linda Wheeldon, eds. Max-Planck-Institute for Psycholinguistics Annual Report 1992. Nijmegen: MPI for Psycholinguistics, 1993.

  • Crystal, David. The Cambridge Encyclopedia of Language. Cambridge: CUP, 1987.

  • Coulmas, Florian. "‘Poison to your soul’ - Thanks and apologies contrastively viewed". In Conversational Routine. Explorations in Standardized Communication Situations and Prepatterned Speech, edited by Florian Coulmas, 69-91. The Hague: Mouton, 1981.

  • Dixon, Robert. The Rise and Fall of Languages. Cambridge: CUP, 1997.

  • Duranti, Alessandro. "Ethnography of speaking: towards a linguistics of the praxis." In Linguistics: The Cambridge Survey. Vol. IV. Language: The Sociocultural Context, edited by Frederick Newmeyer, 210-228. Cambridge: CUP, 1988.

  • Duranti, Alessandro. Linguistic Anthropology. Cambridge: CUP, 1997.

  • Duranti, Alessandro. "Language as culture in US anthropology". Current Anthropology 44 (2003): 323-347.

  • Duranti, Alessandro. and Charles Goodwin, eds. Rethinking Context. Language as an Interactive Phenomenon. Cambridge: CUP, 1992.

  • Eibl-Eibesfeldt, Irenaeus and Gunter Senft. Studienbrief "Rituelle Kommunikation." Kommunikation-Wissen-Kultur. Fernuniversität-Gesamthochschule Hagen: Fachbereich Erziehungs- und Sozialwissenschaften, 1987.

  • Ellen, Roy, Ernest Gellner, Grazyna Kubica and Janusz Mucha, eds. Malinowski between Two Worlds. The Polish Roots of an Anthropological Tradition. Cambridge: CUP, 1988.

  • Firth, John. "Ethnographic analysis and language with reference to Malinowski's views." In Man and Culture - An Evaluation of the Work of Bronislaw Malinowski, edited by Raymond Firth, 93-118. London: Routledge & Kegan Paul, 1957.

  • Firth, Raymond. "Introduction: Malinowski as scientist and man." In Man and Culture - An Evaluation of the Work of Bronislaw Malinowski, edited by Raymond Firth, 1-14. London: Routledge & Kegan Paul, 1957a.

  • Firth, Raymond. Man and Culture - An Evaluation of the Work of Bronislaw Malinowski. London: Routledge & Kegan Paul, 1957b.

  • Firth, Raymond. "Second Introduction 1988." In A Diary in the Strict Sense of the Term, by Bronislaw Malinowski, xxi-xxxi. London: The Athlone Press (first edition 1967), 1989.

  • Foley, William. Anthropological Linguistics. An Introduction. Oxford: Blackwell, 1997.

  • Halliday, Michael. "The form of a Functional Grammar." In Halliday: System and Function in Language, edited by Gunther Kress, 7-25. London: OUP, 1976.

  • Hockett, Charles. Man's Place in Nature. New York: McGraw Hill, 1973.

  • Hymes, Dell. "General Introduction." In Language in Culture and Society: A Reader in Linguistics and Anthropology, edited by Dell Hymes, xxi-xxxii. New York: Harper and Row, 1964.

  • Hymes, Dell. "Models of the interaction of language and social setting". Journal of Social Issues 23 (1967): 8-28.

  • Hymes, Dell. "Models of the interaction of language and social life." In Directions in Sociolinguistics - the Ethnography of Communication, edited by John Gumperz and Dell Hymes, 35-71. New York: Holt, Rinehart and Winston, 1972.

  • Hymes, Dell. Foundations in Sociolinguistics. An Ethnographic Approach. Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 1974.

  • Kohl, Karl-Heinz. "‘Der Verdammte der Inseln’ Bronislaw Kaspar (sic) Malinowski (1884-1942)". In Abwehr und Verlangen: zur Geschichte der Ethnologie, edited by Karl-Heinz Kohl, 39-62. Frankfurt am Main: Edition Qumran im Campus Verlag, 1987.

  • Labov, William and David Fanshel. Therapeutic Discourse: Psychotherapy as Conversation. New York: Academic Press, 1977.

  • Langendoen, D. Terrence. The London School of Linguistics. A Study of the Linguistic Theories of B. Malinowski and J. R. Firth. Cambridge, Mass.: MIT Press, 1968.

  • Laver, John. "Communicative functions of phatic communion." In Organization of Behavior in Face-to-Face Interaction, edited by Adam Kendon, Richard Harris and Mary Ritchie Key, 215-238. The Hague: Mouton, 1975.

  • Laver, John. "Linguistic routines and politeness in greeting and parting." In Conversational Routine. Explorations in Standardized Communication Situations and Prepatterned Speech, edited by Florian Coulmas, 289-304. The Hague: Mouton, 1981.

  • Levinson, Stephen. Pragmatics. Cambridge: CUP, 1983.

  • Malinowski, Bronislaw. "The natives of Mailu: Preliminary results of the Robert Mond research work in British New Guinea." Transactions and Proceeding of the Royal Society of South Australia Vol. XXXIX (1915): 494-706.

  • Malinowski, Bronislaw. "Classificatory particles in the language of Kiriwina." Bulletin of the School of Oriental Studies, Vol. I, part IV (1920): 33-78.

  • Malinowski, Bronislaw. The Argonauts of the Western Pacific. An Account of Native Enterprise and Adventure in the Archipelagoes of Melanesian New Guinea. London: Routledge & Kegan Paul, 1922.

  • Malinowski, Bronislaw. "The problem of meaning in primitive languages." In The Meaning of Meaning. A Study of the Influence of Language upon Thought and of the Science of Symbolism, edited by Charles Ogden and Ivor Richards, 296-336. London: Kegan Paul. (Fourth edition revised 1936), 1923.

  • Malinowski, Bronislaw. Coral Gardens and Their Magic. London: Allen & Unwin, 1935

  • Malinowski, Bronislaw. "The dilemma of contemporary linguistics. Review of M. M. Lewis. 1936. Infant speech: A study of the beginnings of language. London: Kegan Paul." In Nature CXL (1937): 172-173.

  • Malinowski, Bronislaw. A Diary in the Strict Sense of the Term. London: The Athlone Press, 1967.

  • Malinowski, Bronislaw. Magic, Science and Religion and Other Essays. London: Souvenir Press, 1974.

  • Metraux, Rhoda. "Bronislaw Malinowski." International Encyclopedia of Social Sciences, Vol. 9 (1968): 541-549. London: Crowell Collier and Macmillan.

  • Nerlich, Brigitte and David Clarke. Language, Action and Context - The Early History of Pragmatics in Europe and America, 1780-1930. Amsterdam: John Benjamins, 1996.

  • Paluch, Andrzej. "The Polish background to Malinowski's work." Man 16 (1981): 276-285. [CrossRef]

  • Pisarkowa, Krystyna. Językoznawstwo Bronisława Malinowskiego. Kraków: Universitas, 2000.

  • Robins, Robert. "Malinowski, Firth, and the ‘Context of Situation’." In Social Anthropology and Language, edited by Edwin Ardener, 33-46. London: Tavistock, 1971.

  • Schmidt, Bernd. Malinowskis Pragmasemantik. Heidelberg: Carl Winter, 1984.

  • Senft, Gunter. "Weyeis Wettermagie - eine ethnolinguistische Untersuchung von fünf wettermagischen Formeln eines Wettermagiers auf den Trobriand Inseln." Zeitschrift für Ethnologie 10 (1985): 67-90.

  • Senft, Gunter. Kilivila - The Language of the Trobriand Islanders. Berlin: Mouton de Gruyter, 1986.

  • Senft, Gunter. "Rituelle Kommunikation auf den Trobriand Inseln." Zeitschrift für Literaturwissenschaft und Linguistik 65 (1987): 105-130.

  • Senft, Gunter. "Mahnreden auf den Trobriand Inseln - Eine Fallstudie." In Verbale Interaktion - Studien zur Empirie und Methodologie, edited by Dieter Flader, 27-49. Stuttgart: J.B. Metzler, 1991.

  • Senft, Gunter. "‘As time goes by…’ Changes observed in Trobriand Islanders' culture and language, Milne Bay Province, Papua New Guinea." In Culture Change, Language Change - Case Studies from Melanesia, edited by Tom Dutton, 67-89. Canberra: Pacific Linguistics, 1992.

  • Senft, Gunter. "These ‘procrustean’ feelings… - Some of my problems in describing Kilivila." Semaian 11 (1994): 86-105.

  • Senft, Gunter. "Fieldwork." In Handbook of Pragmatics, edited by Jef Verschueren, Jan-Ola Östman and Jan Blommaert, 595-601. Amsterdam: John Benjamins, 1995.

  • Senft, Gunter. "Phatic communion." In Handbook of Pragmatics, edited by Jef Verschueren, Jan-Ola Östman and Jan Blommaert, 10-20. Amsterdam: John Benjamins, 1996a.

  • Senft, Gunter. Classificatory Particles in Kilivila. Oxford: OUP, 1996b.

  • Senft, Gunter. "Magical conversation on the Trobriand Islands". Anthropos 92 (1997): 369-391.

  • Senft, Gunter. "Bronislaw Kaspar Malinowski." In Handbook of Pragmatics, edited by Jef Verschueren, Jan-Ola Östman, Jan Blommaert and Chris Bulcaen, 20-30. Amsterdam: John Benjamins, 1999.

  • Senft, Gunter. "‘?Kevalikuliku’: Earthquake magic from the Trobriand Islands (for unshakeables)." In The Boy from Bundaberg - Studies in Melanesian Linguistics in Honour of Tom Dutton, edited by Andrew Pawley, Malcolm Ross and Darrell Tryon, 323-331. Canberra: Pacific Linguistics, 2001.

  • Silverstein, Michael. "Linguistics and anthropology." In Linguistics and Neighboring Disciplines, edited by Renate Bartsch and Theo Vennemann, 157-170. Amsterdam: North-Holland Publishing Co., 1975.

  • Tambiah, Stanley. Culture, Thought, and Social Action. An Anthropological Perspective. Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 1985.

  • Verschueren, Jef. Understanding Pragmatics. London: Arnold, 1999.

  • Wayne (Malinowska), Helen. "Bronislaw Malinowski: the influence of various women on his life and works." American Ethnologist 12 (1985): 529-540. [CrossRef]

  • Wayne (Malinowska), Helen. ed. The Story of a Marriage. The Letters of Bronislaw Malinowski and Elsie Masson. London: Routledge, 1995.

  • Wegener, Phillip. Untersuchungen über die Grundfragen des Sprachlebens. Tübingen: Max Niemeyer, 1885.

  • Weiner, Annette. "Introduction." In The Sexual Life of Savages in North-Western Melanesia, edited by Bronislaw Malinowski, xii-xlix. Boston: Beacon Press, 1987.

  • Wittgenstein, Ludwig. Philosophische Untersuchungen. Frankfurt am Main: Suhrkamp, 1958.

  • Young, Michael. "The intensive study of a restricted area, or, why did Malinowski go to the Trobriand Islands." Oceania 55 (1984): 1-26.

  • Young, Michael. "Malinowski and the function of culture." In Creating Culture. Profiles in the Study of Culture, edited by Diane Austin-Broos, 124-140. Allen & Unwin, 1987.

Comments (0)

Please log in or register to comment.