Imagine that you are asked to design an experimental study on pragmatics: 1) what would be your topic and why? b) What would be the objective of the study? c) What would be your hypothesizes? d) What would be the methodology (subjects, data collection, data analysis etc.)?
My topic would be “Pragmatic differences in the speech acts among high zones and low zones in Colombian Spanish”. I would like to study if there are pragmatic differences in the speech acts of requests, apology and thanking between the “high” zones which would be the ones near the Andes and mountains (Bogota, Medellin, Cali) and the “low” zones which would be the ones closer to the Caribbean (Barranquilla, Cartagena, Santa Marta) in Colombia because it interests me to understand the reasons for the notable linguistic variations among groups of people that are native from each area.
The objective would be to analyze and determine if there are pragmatic differences in the speech acts of request, apology and thanking among “high” and “low” zones in Colombian Spanish. The purpose would be to establish causes or reasons for the linguistic variations and determine the strongest variables that are part of the differences in the pragmatic uses of the speech acts among both groups.
My hypothesis would be that many factors influence the linguistic variations among “low” and high” zones in Colombia and they determine the social differences among people from both groups. Influence of other languages and cultures would be a variable that would make part of the difference among both zones because of the accessibility or seclusion both areas have gone through. Climatic and environmental setting could play a part in the difference among speech acts used by people from “low” or high” zones in Colombia because of the location of which area which would determine the habits and life style of both areas. Cultural traditions and values among people from “low” and high” zones could represent a difference in the speech acts used because of the preservation or development of linguistic features according to each society. Continue reading