The paper discusses the role of attention in speech acts from a social cognitive pragmatic perspective. Attention is fundamental in several aspects of language use and also plays a pivotal role in the processing of utterance functions (especially ‘illocutionary force’). Through construal operations, the illocutionary force of an utterance can be brought to the listener’s attention in various ways: it can be salient to varying degrees, clear or unclear, foregrounded or backgrounded, according to the speaker’s communicative and social aims. Attention management concerning illocutionary force may simultaneously affect several components of an utterance, yielding ‘attention alternatives’ in speech acts. The paper attempts to give an overview—based on the examples analysed here and on the relevant literature—of the most important dimensions along which these alternatives may vary. Finally, some examples from a political debate are presented to illustrate how attention management related to illocutionary force can serve the speaker’s social and interactional aims and become part of his global impression-making strategies.
To assess potential individual factors influencing quality of life and pain scores of patients suffering from histologically confirmed endometriosis. Study using a questionnaire among patients of reproductive age undergoing laparoscopy with a presumed diagnosis of endometriosis. Details of fertility, previous treatments and quality of life, sexual activity, as well as linear pain scores for several symptoms, were recorded. Details of intraoperative findings were also collected and only those data were used where endometriosis was intraoperatively and histologically proven. A questionnaire before surgery gathered information from women on the following groups of variables: age, marital status, education, reproductive and medical history including previous pregnancies and parity, knowledge of accompanying pelvic disorders, regular sport activity, as well as general quality of life estimates including self-image. Pelvic pain was scored using a visual analogue scale. Data were statistically evaluated. Eighty-one patients complaining about persistent pelvic pain were later intraoperatively and histologically proven to have endometriosis. Thirty-one of them (38.2%) reported regular sport as part of their daily life schedule while 50 of them (61.8%) performed no physical activity at all. Fourteen patients among regular exercisers and 33 patients among those without physical activity reported the effectiveness of painkillers for pelvic pain, corresponding to 45.1% and 66% of these subgroups, respectively (difference statistically significant, p<0.05). Based on our results, we can conclude, that taking painkillers might be less effective among endometriosis patients performing regular daily sport activities, and, thus it might impose them to an unnecessary burden of possible side-effects.