This book unites speech act theory and conversation analysis to advance a
theory of conversational competence. It is predicated on the assumption
that speech act theory, if it is to be of genuine empirical and theoretical
significance, must be embedded within a general theory of conversational
competence capable of accounting for how we do things with words in
naturally occurring conversation, and it can usefully be seen as a
synthesis of traditional speech act theory, conversation analysis, and
artificial intelligence research in natural language processing. Michael L.
Geis analyses a variety of naturally occurring conversations, presenting
them within a framework of computational interest and within discourse
representation theory. In particular, he offers an explicit mapping of
semantic and pragmatic (i.e. speech-act-theoretic) meaning features and
politeness features into so-called conventionalized indirect speech act forms.