Mutual contextual beliefs in memes disambiguation and interpretation-1


Abstract

A visit to social media platforms like Facebook, WhatsApp, Tiktok, Telegram, Twitter, and others often shock us with a lot of hilarious and ambiguous memes. Behind the fun and ambiguity that comes with these memes is largesse of unexpressed meanings capable of being realised through a pragmatic analysis using the Speech Act theory of Mutual Contextual Beliefs (MCBs) as proposed by Kent Bach and Robert M. Harnish. This study hopes to evaluate the role of contextual beliefs in the disambiguation and meaningful interpretation of social media memes. For space, eight purposively selected memes constitute the data for the study. The study posits that participants in social media discourse, that is, the originators of the media texts and the readers need share some mutual contextual knowledge and beliefs to ensure effective communication between them. It is further argued that though there might be flouts of the conversational maxims of H. P Grice in these memes, applying the theory of MCBs in analysing them will resolve the flouts presenting us with cases of indirectness strategies, metaphors and implicatures. The paper concludes that a keen study of the memes reveal the achievement of speech acts like warning, requesting, refusal, resistance, encouragement text disambiguation through indirectness strategies like implicatures and irony.

Keywords: Speech Acts; MCBs;  memes; text comprehension and disambiguation; pragmatics.

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APA

Ojumah, S (2024). Mutual contextual beliefs in memes disambiguation and interpretation-1. Afribary. Retrieved from https://afribary.com/works/mutual-contextual-beliefs-in-memes-disambiguation-and-interpretation-1

MLA 8th

Ojumah, Sylvaus "Mutual contextual beliefs in memes disambiguation and interpretation-1" Afribary. Afribary, 11 May. 2024, https://afribary.com/works/mutual-contextual-beliefs-in-memes-disambiguation-and-interpretation-1. Accessed 24 May. 2024.

MLA7

Ojumah, Sylvaus . "Mutual contextual beliefs in memes disambiguation and interpretation-1". Afribary, Afribary, 11 May. 2024. Web. 24 May. 2024. < https://afribary.com/works/mutual-contextual-beliefs-in-memes-disambiguation-and-interpretation-1 >.

Chicago

Ojumah, Sylvaus . "Mutual contextual beliefs in memes disambiguation and interpretation-1" Afribary (2024). Accessed May 24, 2024. https://afribary.com/works/mutual-contextual-beliefs-in-memes-disambiguation-and-interpretation-1