A Literature Review on the Research Progress of Speech Act Theory and Its Applications

Speech Act Theory; J.L. Austin; J. Searle; applied linguistics


  • Leilei, ZOU
    Professor, College of Foreign Languages, Shanghai Ocean University
  • Chunfang, WU College of Foreign Languages, Shanghai Ocean University, Shanghai, China
January 1, 2023


Speech act exists in every aspect of people's daily life and performs an extinguished position in people's communication. Speech Act Theory was first proposed by the British philosopher J.L. Austin and later expounded and revised by the American philosopher J. Searle, which linked the meaning of language with speech act for the first time, opening up a new perspective for the study of meaning in the philosophy of language and logic. Through a brief review of the literature related to speech acts in the past 40 years, this paper introduces the background of Speech Act Theory, summarizes the content framework of it, reviews the relevant research and evaluation of the theory by domestic and foreign scholars, and analyzes the current application and research of the theory in related fields. Finally, this paper calls on research on the application of the theory in analyzing speech acts in such hot-discussed fields as artificial intelligence in an attempt to contribute to the modernity process of Speech Act Theory.