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  1. Claim

The maxim of verbal communication set forth by Grice that best explains the different rules regarding “small talk” in Finland and the U.S. would have to be quantity. An excellent example of this would have to be the story from the textbook about Marianne who was in Sweden and a man on the bus in Stockholm “put a finger to his lips, and said “Sshh!” (Hall, 2005, pg. 142) to her husband and his relatives. This shows that in that culture as is defined in quantity that there is only proper talk at certain times and places.

  1. Definition

The four maxims that are usually used to analyze verbal communication styles in an intercultural context, according to Grice include:

  1. Quality
  2. Quantity
  3. Relevance
  4. Appropriate Manner
  1. Example

From Donal Carbaugh’s account in Finland that reflects the quantity aspect of the four maxims of verbal communication the example of:

“This requires some thought, sometimes considerable thought and silence depending upon one’s co-participants, prior to speaking. Add to that, that one ought to say something socially worthwhile, and that is ought to be non-contentious, and something that reflects one’s personal commitments, and one’s speech is subject to considerable depends” (Carbough’s, 1995, pg. 223).

This shows that the Finnish really admire the quality of what they are talking about and make sure that the quantity of what they are saying is not too much or out of place.

An example from my daily American communication experience that also resonates with this dimension would be whenever someone asks a specific question about what is going on in my life at the time of the verbal interaction, instead of just asking me how I am and then not saying anything else after that.

  1. Explanation

I think that both of my examples demonstrates the cultural differences reflected through my chosen frame because according to the Finnish, Americans are superficial in their verbal exchanges because American’s have such light conversations, but there are times when people have deeper conversations just as the Finnish would.

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