CHARACTERS’ DISCOURSE IN THE STORIES BY A. A. MILNE: A PRAGMАTIC PERSPECTIVE
Anthropocentrism is a key feature of Alan Alexander Milne’s collection of children’s stories under the common title of Winnie-the-Pooh (1926, 1928), easily one of the best examples of children’s literature classics. Critics and researchers state that for all their outward simplicity, Milne’s stories give deep psychological insight into human nature. We believe that each character (in this article we discuss three of them – Winnie-the-Pooh, Rabbit and Eeyore) can be fitted into the system of psychological types developed by C. G. Jung and the system of communication styles proposed by V. Satir. We claim that Winnie-the-Pooh’s discourse and behaviour suggest his belonging to the Extraverted Sensation type, his communication style being Leveling. Rabbit shows the characteristics of Extraverted Thinking type; in terms of Satir’s taxonomy, his communication style is Computing. Eeyore is definitely the Introverted Thinking type; though it is not so easy to define him from the perspective of communication styles. For Eeyore, we suggest the term ‘Anhedonic style’. We hypothesize that there is correlation between the psychological type of a character and his communication style, and the types of speech acts (assertives, directives, commissives, expressives, declarations) that he chooses, either consciously or subconsciously. Our other hypothesis is that such correlation may be a factor that ensures vertical intertextuality; but this idea needs further investigation.