Society Social relation Individual consciousness
* it is impossible to approach the concept of personality empirically and to define it by objective definitions of its individual traits (usually by means of special tests). The basic element in defining mans personality is the social relationships into which he enters, in which he is both the subject and the object. Man enters into these social relationships through his activity. Leontiev, 1981
* Нuman activity is always material and significant. Humans do not simply behave, nor do they simply perform abstract deeds; any of their actions constitutes at the same time an interaction with objects outside the self, and it can influence or alter them. There is no human who simply acts; there is the human, and there is that which he or she affects or influences.
This does not mean that speech cannot be an independent activity. It is such when a man has a specific motive (or system of motives) which can be satisfied by speech itself, when the aim of the speech is not to obtain something but to construct the utterance as such (or a whole text-a system of utterances ).
We always should bear in mind that there always takes place an increase of the units of psychological activity; what as a sequence of actions becomes one action, a chain operations; and separate, independent activities become actions and merge into one simple activity (Leontiev, 1981, p. 18).
* speech is identical to any other psychological activity. It has a definite aim and is impelled by a motive, or more often by a system of motives which can be external or internal.
A.A.Leontiev believes that a language is a medium of a humans dialogue with the world and with a human, i.e. the world image that is being formed in a humans mind is by the language and the speech activity of the human. One of the ways of speech influence, according to А.А. Leontiev, is the influence through persuasion, the success of which is connected with modeling by the subject of communication of the sense field of the recipient.
Suggests to allocate the following functions: communicative; thinking tools; mastering the socio-historical; experience; national and cultural; knowledge tools.
Speaker (говорящий) Message (сообщение) Hearer (слушающий) Functions of language originally began to systematize in compliance with structure of the communicative (speech) act thought encoding Message decoding thought
Programming (planning)Post – programming External speech motiveThought (speech intention) Inner program ming inner speech Lexical and grammatical elaboration Motor Implementa tion
inner speech inner programming speech production. Therefore, we have LanguageSpeech (act) ActivitySpeech. As well, A. A. Leontiev does not refer to a speech act alone, but refers to thinking-speech-act.
Language Speech act speech ThinkingSpeech Speech act
Inner speech is a speech action moved inside, produced in a compact form. Inner speech is most often accompanied by inner articulation in cases where it is closest to conversational, discursive speech. It is normally understood as a problem-solving mechanism.
Inner Programming the uncognized construction of a certain scheme on the basis of which a speech utterance will be generated in future. Therefore, inner programming can have various types, such as the programming of a concrete statement, or programming of a verbal whole.
The psychological aspects of foreign speech activity can further be summed up under two headings, and this is something to be taken into account in teaching. On the one hand, the pupil should learn how to convert this activity into a speech act, how to apply it to non-verbal tasks and make it a part of his non-verbal activities. In order to achieve this, he must learn to form the new language automatically, without any participation of the conscious mind, or at least with its minimum participation; he must learn to think about what to say, rather than how to say it.
Each separate generation and each certain person belonging to this generation appropriates or, applying more habitual term, acquires language. Language becomes property of each certain individual, a means of communication, and is equal means of thinking and means of understanding of reality.
We speak of communication activity when the motives for the speech lie again outside the concrete speech acts but are specific and can only be satisfied by means of speech: Speech activity Speech act as part of non- verbal activity Speech act as part of communication activity
It should be added that speech is not the only form of communication. Either in conjunction with speech or instead of it we can use a variety of other means for the same purposes: mimicry, gesticulation, non-verbal signalling systems, etc. In practice non-verbal modes of intercourse occur quite frequently in communication (according to some psychologists, nearly 40% of information is transmitted in this way).
Stages of acquisition of foreign speech. Leontiev considers the acquisition (he uses the term mastery) of foreign speech as the sequence of work which the learner has to do. It has several stages. Clearly one cannot perform any speech activity in a foreign language without having the linguistic material for the construction of utterances, without some knowledge of vocabulary, grammar or phonetics. At this stage, however, one only needs to know them to the extent to which they are really indispensable for the speech activity. For this reason it is important when beginning the teaching of a new language to set a sort of absolute minimum, to lay the foundation of the language, without which the teaching of any speech activity would be impossible.
Steps of language acquisition Speech activity Types of psychological operations Second floor Modification of speech acts (communication activity) Automatic, unconscious operations First floor Modification of speech acts (non-verbal activity), speech as a tool, change of motives. Automatic, unconscious operations Ground floor Discrete speech acts are turned into integral utterances Conscious operations, mother tongue as a mediator FoundationSeparate operations, absolute minimum, some knowledge of phonetics, vocabulary and grammar Conscious operations, mother tongue as a mediator
The speech process consists in the translation of the program into a strict linguistic form, which in the mother tongue is a more or less automatic procedure…. In the early stages of mastering a foreign language, the transition from the program to the actual utterance is not achieved directly as program utterance, but is effected through the mediation of the mother tongue, program utterance in the mother tongue utterance in the foreign language. Secondly, the translation itself is not automatic, and the learner will not immediately or without effort come up with the foreign equivalent to the utterance in the mother tongue, remember the rules and successfully apply them. (Leontiev, 1981, pp )