Bart Geurts (University of Nijmegen)
Abstract: The notion of commitment has a deep history in philosophy, but in recent years it has been gaining traction in other disciplines as well, including logic, linguistics, computer science, and psychology. It is now widely agreed that commitments are essential to social interaction in general and communication in particular. A commitment-based approach to pragmatics is appealing not only because it opens new perspectives on a wide range of pragmatic phenomena, but also because it presents an alternative to the received doctrine that communication is a matter of expressing and recognising communicative intentions. This course discusses various ways in commitments may be involved in communication, and it also shows how commitments are instrumental in planning and coordination, thus linking communication with other forms of social interaction.