Implication in English

cloa

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I am an Australian. I am teaching two adults in Japan who are a couple- they have separate lessons. One is an ENT doctor (main focus of her learning) and the other is a Kendo expert who often goes overseas and would like to have a chat with students or instructors or hotels or restaurants. I was reading this restaurant dialogue from Islcollective with the Kendo Expert and I realised there is so much implication marked in italics (note this is a little annoying because it doesn't make breaks in communication clear such after the first two lines). Are there good resources for helping students understand common uses of implication- I don't a particular person's implication?


A: Waiter! I’d like the menu, please. (implies I would like you to give me the menu)
W: Here you are, sir.
W: Are you ready to order?
A: Yes, I am. Can I start with tomato soup? Then the salmon and steak, please.
W: What steak would you like: rare, medium or
well - done?
A: Medium, please.
W: And would you like vegetables or salad?
A: Vegetables, please. (implies yes)
W: Would you like any wine?
A: Yes, white, please……..
A: Waiter! Can I have the bill, please? (implies can give me the bill)
W: Here you are.
A: Is service included?
W: Yes, it is.
A: Can I pay by credit card?
W: Yes, of course.
 

emsr2d2

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I am an Australian. I am teaching two adults in Japan who are a couple - they have separate lessons. One is an ENT doctor (main focus of her learning) and the other is a Kendo expert who often goes overseas and would like to have a chat with students, [STRIKE]or[/STRIKE] instructors, [STRIKE]or[/STRIKE] and [STRIKE]hotels[/STRIKE] hotel or [STRIKE]restaurants[/STRIKE] restaurant staff. I was reading this restaurant dialogue from Islcollective with the Kendo Expert and I realised there is so much implication marked in italics (note this is a little annoying because it doesn't make breaks in communication clear such after the first two lines). Are there good resources for helping students understand common uses of implication- I don't mean a particular person's implication?


A: Waiter! I’d like the menu, please. (Implies "I would like you to give me the menu.")
W: Here you are, sir.
W: Are you ready to order?
A: Yes, I am. Can I start with tomato soup? Then the salmon and steak, please.
W: What steak would you like: rare, medium or well-done?
A: Medium, please.
W: And would you like vegetables or salad?
A: Vegetables, please. (Implies "Yes.")
W: Would you like any wine?
A: Yes, white, please.
A: Waiter! Can I have the bill, please? (Implies "Can you give me the bill?")
W: Here you are.
A: Is service included?
W: Yes, it is.
A: Can I pay by credit card?
W: Yes, of course.

I'm not sure whether "implication" is your choice of word or that of the textbook. Whichever it is, I'm not keen on it. I don't think any of those are implications - they're simply meanings.

"I'd like the menu" is simply another, and more natural, way of saying "I'd like you to give/bring me the menu".
I disagree that "Vegetables, please" (after being given two options) means or implies "Yes". The only possible answers to "And would you like vegetables or salad?" are "Both", "Neither", "Vegetables" and "Salad". If the person said "Yes" in response to the original question, it wouldn't be clear what they wanted.
"Can I have the bill?" is simply the standard way of asking for the bill. I've never heard anyone say "Can you give/bring me the bill?"

For me, an implication is different. If the waiter said "And would you like vegetables or salad? The salad's really good!", that would imply that he felt the salad would be the better choice.

On a separate note, it's rather odd for someone to order both the salmon and the steak for their main course. It's not impossible, of course, but it's unusual to order a starter and then two main courses.
 

NinjaTurtle

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Cloa,

There are no such resources. You just have to tell him the inferences. "Can I have the bill?" = "Please give me the bill", etc. If you want, you can have him practice the dialogues several times, each time with a different way of saying the same thing.

By the way, these various differences and inferences also exist in Japanese. (I speak Japanese.) One way to handle this is to compare the various differences in English with the same various differences in Japanese.
 
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Tarheel

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Ninja Turtle, you should have read Ems's post before posting something yourself.

You might want to work on learning the difference between imply and infer.

Are you really an English teacher?

:)
 

cloa

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I'm not sure whether "implication" is your choice of word or that of the textbook. Whichever it is, I'm not keen on it. I don't think any of those are implications - they're simply meanings.

"I'd like the menu" is simply another, and more natural, way of saying "I'd like you to give/bring me the menu".
I disagree that "Vegetables, please" (after being given two options) means or implies "Yes". The only possible answers to "And would you like vegetables or salad?" are "Both", "Neither", "Vegetables" and "Salad". If the person said "Yes" in response to the original question, it wouldn't be clear what they wanted.
"Can I have the bill?" is simply the standard way of asking for the bill. I've never heard anyone say "Can you give/bring me the bill?"

For me, an implication is different. If the waiter said "And would you like vegetables or salad? The salad's really good!", that would imply that he felt the salad would be the better choice.

On a separate note, it's rather odd for someone to order both the salmon and the steak for their main course. It's not impossible, of course, but it's unusual to order a starter and then two main courses.
someone to order both the salmon and the steak for their main course- never said that they are dining alone.
Ordering a full course set could easily have two mains- I have done it.

Thanks for your corrections- wrote it too quick.


"And would you like vegetables or salad?" implied part is not the whole answer only a part so the proper explicit possible answers are Yes, both. Yes, vegetables. Yes, salad. No, I don't want neither. No, I don't want neither. Can I have something else?
 

jutfrank

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"And would you like vegetables or salad?" implied part is not the whole answer only a part so the proper explicit possible answers are Yes, both. Yes, vegetables. Yes, salad. No, I don't want neither. No, I don't want neither. Can I have something else?

Look again carefully at what you have written here. If one of your students had written this, would you want to correct anything?
 

Charlie Bernstein

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Look again carefully at what you have written here. If one of your students had written this, would you want to correct anything?
I wonder if it's an Australianism. We have quirks like that here in Maine. People say things like:

- I don't care if you come over (meaning I don't mind if you come over, meaning, I wish you would come over).
- So don't I (meaning I don't, either).
- Come over after six (meaning Come over at six).
 
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cloa

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"And would you like vegetables or salad?" the implied part is not the whole answer. It is only a part of the answer so the proper explicit possible answers are Yes, both. Yes, vegetables. Yes, salad. No, I don't want neither. No, I don't want neither. Can I have something else?

Short hand is implication- you are implying some words that are not included. There is enough garbage semantics in linguistics to last a lifetime so let's not include that. I did a TEFL with so much jargon- most of which I will never use.

None of my students are at a level whereby they write anything like that. My answer was implication in practice.
 

Tarheel

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Would you like vegetables or salad?
A. vegetables
B. salad
C. both
D. neither

Would Australians say "I don't want neither"?

:)
 

jutfrank

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W: What steak would you like: rare, medium or well - done?
A: Medium, please.
W: And would you like vegetables or salad?
A: Vegetables, please. (implies yes)

Despite its syntactic form, the highlighted question does not require a yes/no answer. It is meant for the responder to say which of the two options he wants. The idea is that when you order the steak, there is a choice of accompaniment. You simply answer: Salad, please or Vegetables, please. It would be very unusual for someone not to order an accompaniment for a steak, and perhaps even more unlikely that someone would request both salad and vegetables!

There is no implication of any kind being made here—just a direct answer to a clear question.
 
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jutfrank

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Short hand is implication- you are implying some words that are not included. There is enough garbage semantics in linguistics to last a lifetime so let's not include that.

I have no idea what any of this is supposed to mean.
 
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