On systematically distorted communication

Inquiry 13 (1-4):205-218 (1970)
In this, the first of two articles outlining a theory of communicative competence, the author shows how the requirements of such a theory are to be found in an analysis not of the linguistic competence of a native speaker, but of systematic distortion of communication of the kind postulated by psychoanalytic theory. The psychoanalyst's hermeneutic understanding of initially incomprehensible acts and utterances depends on the explanatory power of this understanding, and therefore rests on theoretical assumptions. After a preliminary delineation of the range of incomprehensible acts and utterances dealt with in psychoanalysis, the author presents an account of psychoanalysis as linguistic analysis. He then explicates the key theoretical assumptions underlying the analytical procedure, in particular those relating to the notion of ?scenic understanding?, and concludes by indicating the place of explanatory understanding in a theory of communicative competence
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DOI 10.1080/00201747008601590
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