Presentation on theme: "语言学 Linguistics Week I & II Politeness Principle & Face-saving Theory."— Presentation transcript:
语言学 Linguistics Week I & II Politeness Principle & Face-saving Theory
They appeared to one another exactly as they had in college --- as raw youngsters whose present mustaches, baldnesses, paunches, and wrinkles were but jovial disguises put on for the evening. “You haven’t changed a particle!” they marveled. The men whom they could not recall they addressed, “Well, well, great to see you again, old man. What are you --- still doing the same thing?” ——Sinclair Lewis ， Babbitt Dr. Johnson, the lexicographer, was once assailed by a fishwoman with foul epithets. Whereupon he turned upon her, and berated her terribly. He called her a noun, an adverb, an interjection, an adjective, and thus like, until she waxed as mad as a hornet. I. Politeness Principle
Problems with CP and the Birth of PP Why indirect? Sense & Force
Scenario 1 A: We’ll all miss Bill and Agatha, won’t we? B: Well, we’ll all miss BĬLL. Scenario 2 P: Someone’s eaten the icing off the cake. C: It wasn’t MĚ. Dear Sir, Mr. X’s command of English is excellent, and his attendance at tutorials has been regular, etc. Yours
“Opium inspired many works of literature” “Syphilis …is capable of stimulating genius”
a ） competitive （竞争类，如命令，恳请） b ） convivial （和谐类，如给予、邀请） c ） collaborative （协作类，如阐述、告诉） d ） conflictive （冲突类，如谴责、威胁） Leech’s Classification of SAs textual rhetoric rhetoric interpersonal rhetoric
Competitives demand politeness far more than other kinds like convivials and collaboratives, because the the goals of which are intrinsically DISCOURTEOUS, whereas convivials are intrinsically COURTEOUS and, for collaboratives, politeness is largely irrelevant. Last, Conflictives, designed to cause offence, are impolite by nature. 1)Give me ten cents, please. (competitive) 2)Do come and have dinner with me this evening! (convivial) 3)There is a dog behind you. (collaboratives) 4) a) Give me all your money and get out of the house. b) Put up your hand! (conflictive)
Various politeness strategies, thus, are employed to mitigate the face-threatening power. According to Leech, the greater the cost an act is (be it verbal or non-verbal) to the audience, the more polite the speaker ought to try to make the utterance.
1) 1) Tact Maxim (in impositives 指令 and commissives 承诺 ) (a) Minimize cost to other [(b) Maximize benefit to other] 2) 2) Generosity Maxim (in impositives and commissives) (a) Minimize benefit to self [(b) Maximize cost to self]. 3) 3) Approbation Maxim (in expressives 表情 and assertives 表述 ) (a) Minimize dispraise of other [(b) Maximize praise of other] 4) 4) Modesty Maxim (in expressives and assertives) (a) Minimize praise of self [(b) Maximize dispraise of self] 5) 5) Agreement Maxim (in assertives) (a) Minimize disagreement between self and other [(b) Maximize agreement between self and other] 6) 6) Sympathy Maxim (in assertives) (a) Minimize antipathy between self and other [(b) Maximize sympathy between self and other]
 Peel these potatoes.  Hand me the newspaper.  Sit down.  Look at that.  Enjoy your holiday.  Have another sandwich. cost to h (hearer) less polite benefit to h (hearer)more polite  Answer the phone.  I want you to answer the phone.  Will you answer the phone?  Can you answer the phone?  Would you mind answering the phone?  Could you possibly answer the phone? indirectness more polite less polite (Graph 2: INDIRECTNESS SCALE) (Graph 1: COST-BENEFIT SCALE) Tact Maxim
* Answer the phone. * I want you to answer the phone. * Will you answer the phone? * Can you answer the phone? * Would you mind answering the phone? * Could you possibly answer the phone? etc. optionality less polite more polite (Graph 3: OPTIONALITY SCALE) Next
Generosity Maxim  *You MUST have another sandwich.  Do have another sandwich!  Please have another sandwich!  Look at that.  Would you like to have another sandwich?  *Would it be possible for you to have another sandwich?  *Would you mind having another sandwich? Next
年轻有为 Approbation Maxim Attention: Difference between English-speaking countries and China 你真幽默 ? ? Euphemism: “ 白衣天使 ” for “ 护士 ”, “ 人类灵魂的工程师 ” for “ 教师 ” Next formularized complimentary clichés a case of foreigner’s compliment Your son is smart. Your wife is beautiful. Your English is OK.
A: 您老能否给我这幅字提点意见？ B: 书法这东西讲不清楚。你这幅字有自己的风格，也算 自成一体。 A: 我那媳妇，好吃懒做且不说，花钱又大手大脚。 B: 我听说她心地很善良的。而且，人家花钱也是孝顺你嘛！ A: 现在的年轻人，实在是好高骛远。你就说小李吧，什么事 都做不成，又 …… B: 应该说是自我价值较看重。 Question: Of what substantial differences could the Approbation Maxim remind you between Chinese and English- speaking people after reading the following dialogues?”
Ex.1 Your Majesty, I am a mere worm, a disgusting toad, a dog’s turd, and I deserve no forgiveness! I throw myself at Your Majesty’s feet! Ex.2 A: What a bright boy you are! You always get full marks. B1: Thank you. I have very good teachers. B2: Thank you. The exam questions are not that hard. B3: Thank you, but I’m not the only one in the class that gets full marks. Modesty Maxim
V (visitor): 你真有本事，盖了这么大这么漂亮的房子！ H (host): 哪里哪里。不过是有个窝罢了。 V: 你小孩真聪明。 H: 哪谈得上聪明？还不就是嘴巴爱讲话而已嘛。 V: 你太谦虚了。 H: 来来来，我们吃个便饭吧。真是不好意思，没什么像样的菜，只好请你 将就了。 V: 瞧你说的，这么多菜还叫没什么菜？！你这么客气我下次可不敢来了。 唉呀，你夫人菜做得真好，色香味俱全，什么时候也教教内人？ H: 你就别夸她了。她呀，也就会做几个家常菜糊弄糊弄客人罢了。 V: 吃也吃饱了，喝也喝足了，我得告辞了。 H: 好吧，既然你执意要走，我也不强留了。不过，有空可要常来坐坐哈， 寒舍别的没有，一杯水酒还是有的。 Next
Agreement Maxim A: What do you think of this dress? Isn’t it beautiful? B1: Yeah, beautiful, indeed! Very beautiful! B2: Well, it’s beautiful. But if I were you, I would have chosen yellow instead of white. B3: Badly designed. And, you see the color… I just couldn’t understand why you are so fond of white dress. Next
II. Some Key Aspects to the Understanding of the PP 1.Maxims and Sub-maxims Firstly, the Tact Maxim is without doubt the most important one: The polite use of language means the tactful use of language. And, if we extend the notions of “benefit” and “cost” to all the illocutionary acts, then it would perhaps be reasonable to reduce all the maxims proposed by Leech to only one maxim of politeness, “to minimize benefit to self and to maximize benefit to other; to maximize cost to self and to minimize cost to other”.
E.g. N ：婶婶，您可一定要来吃我的喜酒啊。 A ：别客气了，有你叔叔去就行了。 N ：那怎么行啊？您可就我这么一个亲侄儿，别让人笑话我， 说我有多小气呢。 A ：都是自家人，真的不要客气。 N ：既然都是自家人，您还客气啥？您可是一定要给我面子。 A ：怎么会呢？但是，我真的没空，我还有活要干呢。 N ：我可不管。您要不去，我这脸往哪搁啊？婶婶，为了我， 您非答应不可！ A ：孩子，我知道你是诚心的，可你看，我是真的走不开。 N ：我不管。 A ：好好好，你这孩子，真拗不过你，我去就是了。
Secondly, of the six maxims discussed above, the first four maxims are called by Leech as “the twinned maxims”: Of the two pairs, the first one “appears to be a more powerful constraint on conversational behaviour” than the second one, which may reflect a general law that politeness is focused more on other than on self. Thirdly, within each maxim, sub-maxim (b) seems to be less important than sub-maxim (a), which seems to illustrate another general law that negative politeness (avoidance of discord) is a more weighty consideration than positive politeness (seeking concord).
2. Degree of Politeness Q: How far can we go on the “road” of politeness? What polite behavior can be accepted as being polite on the one hand, and being proper on the other? Does it mean the more polite the better? e.g. Modesty Maxim The speaker is expected to “maximize dispraise of self”. Yet, A person who continually seeks opportunities for self- denigration quickly becomes tedious, and more importantly, will be judged insincere.
3. Politeness and Context Politeness is context-dependent. Leech’s claim that some illocutions are inherently impolite and others are inherently polite does not necessarily hold true all the time. Variables: interpersonal relationship, social status, social position, social conventions, immediate conversational environment. A polite utterance may seem to be impolite or even irritating, and vice versa.
Scenario (A) A: 出去约会？带上我这把雨伞，今晚可能会下雨。 B: 谢谢！ Scenario (B) A: 出去约会？带上我这把雨伞，今晚可能会下雨。 B: 哼！省省吧。 More: Military commands --- “Attention!” Teacher’s order --- “Open your book…” neither polite nor impolite. Mey: The existence of social hierarchy (as in institutionalized contexts such as the schools, the military, religious communities etc.) often pre-empts the use of politeness altogether.
Some social conventions “pre-empts” the use of politeness. Degrading comments. “ 瞧这孩子，咋长得这么难看呢？ ” “ 这孩子好瘦啊！ ” Here, the observance of the Approbation Maxim is viewed as impolite, while the violation of the maxim is considered the proper polite behavior!
Scollon Involvement strategies & independence strategies Involvement : is concerned with the person’s right and need to be considered a normal, contributing, or supporting member of society. politeness strategies: paying attention to others, showing a strong interest in their affairs, pointing out common in-group membership or points of view with them, or using first names, etc. Independence : emphasizes the individuality of the participants. politeness strategies: give or grant independence to the hearer, such as making minimal assumptions about the needs or interests of others. P (power), D (distance), W (weight of imposition: formalness): ±P ±D ±W
Three politeness system : deference, solidarity and hierarchy Speaker 1 Speaker 2 Figure 1 Deference politeness system (–P, +D) Characteristics 1. Symmetrical (–P) --- the participants see themselves as being at the same social level; 2. Distant (+D) --- each uses independence strategies speaking to the other. )
Speaker 1 Speaker 2 Figure 2 Solidarity politeness system (–P, –D) Characteristics 1. Symmetrical (–P) --- the participants see themselves as being in equal social position; 2. Close (–D) --- the participants both use politeness strategies of involvement.
Speaker 1 (involvement strategies) Speaker 2 (independence strategies) Figure 3 Hierarchical politeness system (+P, +/–D) Characteristics 1. Asymmetrical (+P) --- the participants see themselves as being in unequal social position 2. Asymmetrical in face strategies --- the “higher” uses involvement face strategies and the “lower” uses independence face strategies
4. Politeness and Culture Politeness is culturally-bound. Q: 1. How to define what is “good manners or etiquette”? 2. What can be counted as “good manners or etiquette” e.g. different behaviors of backchannels Clancy et al: Visitors to Japan are surprised when witnessing Japanese during phone conversations smiling, bowing, and head nodding, besides giving an abundance of verbal aizuchi (a form of backchannels) Japanese using backchannels frequently: rapport as being polite Chinese listening attentively and avoiding using backchannels too frequently: value respectful deference The Japanese: often considered by Americans as being “disruptive and even annoying”; Mandarin paucity “unnerving, leaving them wondering what the listener is thinking”
equality of people humanitarianism Honesty Harmony mentoring relationship in-groups and out- groups inclusion and exclusion Father: How are you getting on with your wife? Son: Is it okay if I refuse to answer the question? Seven cultural factors (Dodd, 1998: 106-108)
5. Metalinguistic Aspects of Politeness Politeness is manifested not only in the content of conversation, but also in the way conversation is managed and structured by its participants. For example, conversational behavior such as speaking at the wrong time (interrupting) or being silent at the wrong time has impolite implications. Three strategies the use of prefaces the strategy of keeping silent the use of phatic communion
Could you tell me… May I ask if … Excuse me, but… I wonder whether… I’m sorry to have to tell you… We regret to have to inform you that… I really hate to tell you, but, you see, … 有句话我不知道该不该说 …… 我很抱歉，但我还是不得不说 …… 如果你不介意的话，我想 …… 不知道会不会打扰您 …… ええと …… すみませんが、デパートへはどう行けばいいんですか。 ひとつおねがいしますが、 …… ちょっとお伺いしますが、 ……
III. Face-saving Theory (FST) --- Brown & Levinson (1978: 56-289) Acts threatening H’s faceActs threatening S’s face Negative Face 1. orders and requests / suggestions, advice/ remindings/ threats, warnings, dares; 2. offers/ promises; 3. compliments, expressions of envy or admiration/ expressions of strong (negative) emotions toward H such as hatred, anger, lust, etc. Expressing thanks/ acceptance of H’s thanks or H’s apology/ excuses/ acceptance of offers/ responses to H’s faux pas/ unwilling promises and offers
Positive Face 1.expressions of disapproval, criticism, contempt or ridicule, complaints and reprimands, accusations, insults/ contradictions or disagreements, challenges; 2.expressions of violent (out-of- control) emotions/ irreverence, mention of taboo topics, including those that are inappropriate in the context/ bringing of bad news about H, or good news (boasting) about S/ raising of dangerously emotional or divisive topics/ blatant non- cooperation in an activity/ use of address terms and other status- marked identifications in initial encounters. Apologies/ acceptance of a compliment/ breakdown of physical control over body, bodily leakage, stumbling or falling down/ self-humiliation, shuffling or cowering, acting stupid, self-contradicting/ confessions, admissions of guilt or responsibility/ emotion leakage, non-control of laughter or tears.
Redressive Strategies with redressive action 5. Don’t do the FTA Do the FTA 4. off record on record 1. without redressive action, baldly 3. negative politeness 2. positive politeness
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