The philosopher Paul Grice proposed four conversational maxims that arise from the pragmatics of natural language. The Gricean Maxims are a way to explain the link between utterances and what is understood from them. The Maxims are based on his cooperative principle, which states, ‘Make your conversational contribution such as is required, at the stage at which it occurs, by the accepted purpose or direction of the talk exchange in which you are engaged,’ and is so called because listeners and speakers must speak cooperatively and mutually accept one another to be understood in a particular way. The principle describes how effective communication in conversation is achieved in common social situations and is further broken down into the four Maxims of Quality, Quantity, Relevance and Manner.
- Cooperative principle
- Paul Grice
- Leech's politeness maxims
- Relevance theory
- Politeness theory
- Mey, Jacob. 2001. Pragmatics: An Introduction, page 76-77. Blackwell.
- Wardhaugh, Ronald. 2006. An Introduction to Sociolinguistics. Blackwell.