Excuse me... What did you really mean?

Faculty Student Seminar: A Talk by Dr. Adi Raz

Tue, February 15, 2011 | Texas Hillel Library, 2105 San Antonio St.

12:00 PM

Excuse me... What did you really mean?

An old woman is standing in the middle of the isle in your local supermarket. You don’t see her and you bump into her. In Korea, you would apologize ten times and give her your business card, just in case she wants to contact you. In Hungary, you would apologize profusely. In Israel, you would scold her and ask why she is standing in the middle of the isle waiting for an accident to happen…What is the proper thing to do in a given culture? Why do non-native speakers visiting other cultures tend to offend the locals? These questions can all be answered by understanding the pragmatics of a culture. Pragmatics is the study of language as action and of the social contexts in which linguistic action takes place. Cross-cultural pragmatics is the study of linguistic action carried out by language users from different ethnolinguistic backgrounds. 

This talk will discuss the different meanings behind words and how they relate to the Middle East.


The seminar will be held at Texas Hillel, and we will serve a light lunch, please RSVP to: galit@mail.utexas.edu

Sponsored by: Schusterman Center for Jewish Studies jointly with Texas Hillel

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