Functions of Vague Language and distinguishing it from Ambiguity and Generality
Vague language is a linguistic phenomenon in communication, which means a speaker discuss something without identifying what the certain fact it is. There is also a saying that “a representation is vague when the relation of the representing system to the represented system is not one-one, but many.” (Russell, B. 1928) In fact, vague language enjoys the popularity in all fields of both written and spoken language. Vagueness is an important characteristic of natural communication. This report impliments vague language through semantic and pragmatic aspects and categories of vagueness, as well as clarifys vagueness, generality and ambiguity.
Generally, the use of vagueness is influenced by various factors, such as culture differences, values, thought patterns and religions. Vagueness can occur in communication under both objective and subjective conditions. One of the objective conditions is that the concept itself is unclear, which means the words or expressions themselves have more than one meaning. Another is that the speaker may forget or lack the knowledge of the certain facts of what they are talking about. In this kind of situation, because the speaker has no other choice but to use vague language, it usually cause a negative effect on the content that the speaker tries to convey. Subjective condition refers to that the speaker attempts to hide some information or make the concept unclear