Pragmatics

Deixis

Types of deixis

DEFINITION OF DEIXIS

Deixis , which can also be indicated as deíxis , is a term that comes from the Greek language and is used in linguistics . Deixis is the indication that is specified through components (called deictics ) that refer to a subject, a thing, a time or a place.

Deixis, therefore, is linked to those terms that are used to indicate different elements, which may have a presence elsewhere in a message or appear in memory . “These” , “there” , “mine” and “I” are some elements that are part of the deixis.

For example: “I proposed to organize a new meeting for Franuer’s partners, although I don’t think they are interested , ” “If you are looking for the red folder, it is there” , “What do you do with that notebook? It’s mine! ” , “ The truth is that I don’t think that way ” .

As can be seen in these examples, deixis can only be interpreted properly if attention is given to the context of who pronounces the expression. If, in the middle of a face-to-face conversation with another person , she tells us that the house keys are “up there” , we will know what she means thanks to her gestural indication.

In a similar sense, the expression “Here there are always people in the morning” will only make sense if we know where it is “here . ” If we just read the phrase without knowing anything about the context, “here” can refer to a hospital , a bank , a plaza or any other place.

With respect to the moment of the speech in which the contextual tools necessary to understand the meaning of a deixis are provided, it is possible to speak of:

Types of Deixis

  • Social : Refers to an individual, but also to the social status of that person or the people who interact.
  • Personnel : Used to indicate the role or role of the person speaking. It is expressed with personal pronouns: me, you, he, she; which can also be expressed in the second person: me, our, your, you …
  • Time : It serves to give an idea of ​​time, or to refer to a fair moment. They are expressed by adverbs or adverbial phrases such as: today, now, tomorrow, yesterday, recently, last month, next month, shortly, etc.
  • Place : You can refer to the distance between who is speaking and who is receiving the message, such as indicating or mentioning the place where a person is speaking. S expresses with adverbs of place such as: there, there, that, those, here, there, bring, come, etc.
  • Cataphoric : It is used to indicate a specific point of the topic that is being discussed, but that has not been mentioned, but is about to be done.
  • Anaphoric : It is contrary to the cataphoric, because it refers to a topic that has already been discussed.

Characteristics of Deixis 

    • It will depend on the context used, the meaning and meaning that can be given to the sentence.
    • These meanings can only be understood when the other person (with whom one speaks) is in the place and the precise moment in which reference is made.
  • Deixis needs to be shown what is referred to It can be in writing, when referring to something that was already mentioned and contextualize the content from it. Or, it can also be orally, through the indication or indication of what is referred to.

For example, if we say “He lives far from me,” we cannot know who “he” is, or why he lives far from someone. Therefore, the phrase needs to be contextualized. It would look like this: Sandra talked with Simon about where her boyfriend lived, to which Sandra added, “He lives far from me.” So, we already know that ‘He’ is Sandra’s boyfriend and that “me” is Sandra herself.

Deixis examples

  1. I  believe that if we do a better job together, we will be victorious.
  2. To  me I  love yoga.
  3. Tomorrow  I have to get to work early
  4. We meet  tonight  at the office to finish tomorrow’s meeting.
  5. Here  we are comfortably enjoying the sunset.
  6. How much time do we have to get to  that place ?
  7. That tree is simply beautiful
  8. His house seems very well built
  9. It took a long time to get here , there was a lot of traffic and my car came with problems and failures.
  10. If you only knew what your sister said that day
  11. I thought about bringing some more glue
  12. Our team was the best ever
  13. Yesterday , when we were walking through the park, we could observe that famous bus.
  14. If she decided like that, then it will be the best for us
  15. I never forget that day we met, there in front of the magazine kiosk in the block.
  16. They told me about that place of Chinese food that everyone refers to, we should go soon, or maybe tomorrow.
  17. Next month we should go jogging
  18. Surely next week will make a better wind to fly
  19. The train may have left recently
  20. The grandparents plan to come over the weekend
  21. You should bring in your bag a candy or a treat
  22. Rare would be that the museum would close shortly , since it is open every day.
  23. A place like the beach is where we should go next week
  24. They say that right now it will be the solar eclipse of the year
  25. The day after tomorrow we should go for more chicken to the super market, this weekend many guests will come. Our duty is to serve you as well as possible. They deserve it that way
  26. It is not possible that there, in that tree can live so many animals

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