I. Purpose Statement
This paper aims to present a definition of the concept ‘communication’ within the context of interpersonal communication in order to formulate a model that may be able to take into consideration and hence provide an adequate explanation of a ‘communicative act’ that includes the observer of the ‘communicative act’ in the process of affirming, interpreting, or conveying information from the actor [the individual(s) who relay(s) meaning] to the actor’s intended audience [the individual(s) who are the recipient(s) of the actor(s) meaning] .
II. Initial Definition of Communication
The initial communication model presented in the previous paper refers to the concept ‘communication’ as a process with intent, generating effectiveness or judgment, occurring between two or more entities, through the form of a message that causes interaction and feedback.
III. Issues with the Initial Definition of Communication
There are several issues with the aforementioned definition of the concept. First, it does not take into account the syntactical and semantical rules involved in the communication process or the ‘communicative act’ and second, it does not take into account the pragmatics and the rules that a linguistic community furnishes for itself in the ‘meaning-making’ process.
The importance of these factors, in the process of providing a model for ‘communicative acts’ is evident if one considers that the aforementioned factors [syntactical rules, semantical rules, and pragmatic rules] are all relevant in the meaning-making process which is a necessary factor in order for communication to take place.
Within this context, a ‘communicative act’ is performed once the actor is successful in communicating what he means. Successful in this sense is determined when the audience was able to grasp the actor’s intended meaning, or what the actor meant by his ‘communicative act’. Thus, the intention of the actor is crucial to the whole of the meaning-making process. What is striking is the fact that we are able to understand and make use of ‘communicative acts’ in everyday lives even if they are oftentimes not truth-functional.
A ‘communicative act’ may be wrongly understood if we are to rely merely on syntactical rules and semantical rules. Actions may have layers of meaning, one of which is the literal meaning. But a linguistic community uses language in various ways that utterances may not always imply what their literal meanings are. Thus, a more appropriate way by which the notion of meaning may be construed is by including pragmatics.
IV. Revised Definition of Communication
Within this context, the concept of communication will refer to a process with intent, generating effectiveness or judgment, occurring between two or more entities, through the form of a message that causes interaction and feedback wherein the effectiveness or judgment generated by the action stands as a result of both the actor and actor’s audience’s knowledge of the syntactical rules, semantical rules, and pragmatic rules involved in the communication process in order for the actor’s audience to understand and hence formulate a judgment regarding the meaning relayed by the actor in the communication process.