Language Culture And Communication 7th Edition by Bonvillain – Test Bank

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Chapter 5—Communicative Interactions

Chapter Objectives

After reading this chapter students should be able to:

  1. Describe the structure of turn-taking in American practice.
  2. Describe the structural properties of conversation.
  3. Interpret the various conversational postulates discussed in this chapter.
  4. Describe the sincerity conditions that directives must satisfy.
  5. Identify the six types of directives.
  6. Explain the various functions of directives.
  7. Analyze the form of directives and of addressee’s responses in context.
  8. Review the function of politeness and the various theories surrounding it.

 

Chapter Overview

This chapter examines conversational interaction, starting with the structure of conversation, followed by the analysis of conversational goals, and ending with a discussion of politeness rules.

The focus on conversational structure begins by describing the norms of turn-taking and how these norms are affected by context. This section includes a discussion of adjacency pairs, tag questions, exit techniques, turn-entry devices, and repair mechanisms. It also provides a description of the organizational structure of informal conversation, an examination of the ways repetition is used in conversation, and unplanned conversational patterning. Finally, the author presents Grice’s (1975) cooperative principle and maxims of conversation.

The discussion of conversational goals focuses first on directives. First, a description of Gordon and Lakoff’s (1971) sincerity conditions for directives is given, followed by the six types of directives: need statements, imperatives, embedded imperatives, permission directives, question directives, and hints. Next, the chapter focuses on the variety of ways speakers can mitigate their directives and the ways in which directives can be oriented. The cultural norms concerning directives in Malagasy and Norwegian are also described. Then, the chapter goes on to introduce Labov and Fanshel’s (1977) rule of requests and also describes how speakers can use interrogatives to mask and challenge directives.

The final section of this chapter focuses on politeness. First, theories of politeness are explained, including Robin Lakoff’s (1973) postulates for politeness and Brown and Levinson’s (1987) explanation of face, face-threatening acts, and positive, negative, and off-record politeness strategies. The author gives an overview of the kinds of linguistic resources speakers can use to realize these different strategies, followed by a discussion of politeness strategies among the Akan of Ghana and Malagasy speakers of Madagascar. A description of honorification and humble speech in Japanese follows, and the chapter ends with a discussion of variation in Japanese politeness based on gender, age, and context.

 

Technical Terms: adjacency pairs, backchannel cues, bald on-record strategy, cooperative principle, directives, embedded imperative, exit technique, face, face-threatening act, felicity conditions, hearer-oriented directive, hints, honorification, humbling prefixes, imperative, impersonal directive, maxim of manner, maxim of quality, maxim of quantity, maxim of relation, need statement, negative face-wants, negative politeness, off-record politeness, permission directive, positive face-wants, positive politeness, pragmatic mitigation, question directive, repair mechanisms, rules of pragmatic competence, rule of requests, sincerity conditions, speaker- and hearer-oriented directive, speaker-oriented directive, syntactic mitigation, tag question, turn-constructional unit, turn-entry device

 

Chapter Outline

  1. Structural Properties of Conversation
  2. Conversational Postulates

III. Directives

  1. Directives and Responses in Context
  • Rule of Requests
  1. Politeness
  • Theories of Politeness
  • Politeness in Japanese

 

Discussion Questions

  1. How important are backchannel cues for you? What kinds of backchannel cues do you expect as a speaker, and what kinds of cues do you give as a listener? Have you ever had a communication breakdown because of issues with backchannel cues?
  2. Brainstorm all the ways you could ask someone (a friend, a family member, a colleague, a server in a restaurant, etc.) for a glass of water. In which contexts would each type of directive be most appropriate? What does that reveal about your language ideologies?
  3. When do you think you are most likely to use each type of strategy for face-threatening acts? For example, in which situations would you be most likely to use a bald on-record strategy? When would you choose positive politeness over negative politeness strategies and vice versa? When do you use hints? What does the distribution of these strategies reveal about your language ideologies regarding politeness?
  4. This chapter describes gender difference in politeness in Japanese. Do you think there are gender differences related to politeness in English? If so, what differences can you think of? If not, why do you think there are no differences?
  5. Examine your own language ideologies related to politeness by thinking about whom you expect to be polite, and in what contexts. For example, who do you expect to be more polite: a man or a woman, an elderly woman or a teenage girl, an employee at a bank or a customer at that same bank, etc.? Are there any patterns in your expectations that shed light on your language ideologies?

 

Research Questions

  1. Over the course of a day or so, listen carefully for people using directives in their speech. Take careful notes each time you hear a directive, jotting down what the person said, some information on the speaker (gender, approximate age, etc.), and some contextual information relevant to the directive. Classify each directive into one of the six types described in the textbook. Look for any patterns in your data and write an essay that presents your findings.
  2. Choose a location or situation where people might use face-threatening acts often (e.g. a restaurant, parents interacting with children, people working together on a project, etc.) and observe what kinds of strategies speakers in that situation use for their face-threatening acts. Look for any patterns in your data and write an essay that describes what you observed.
  3. Research the norms of politeness in a language that interests you. Write an essay reporting on these social norms.
  4. Ask permission to record two or more friends having a conversation and analyze the structure of the conversation in terms of turn-entry devices, interruptions, tag questions, adjacency pairs, backchannel cues, repair mechanisms, etc. Write a paper that describes the structure of their conversation with examples from your data.
  5. Ask two or more pairs of friends or acquaintances if you can record them conversing. Analyze the structure of the different conversations. What does the structure of each conversation tell you about the social relations of the speakers? How are the structures of each conversation similar or different? Can these similarities or differences be explained based on social or contextual factors?

 

Other Readings:

Structural Properties of Conversation

Pomerantz, Anita and B. J. Fehr. 1997. Conversation Analysis: An approach to the study of social action as sense making practices. In Discourse as Social Interaction, ed. T. Van Dijk. London: Sage.

Schegloff, Emanuel. 2007. Sequence Organization in Interaction: A Primer in Conversational Analysis, Volume 1. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Schiffrin, Deborah. 1994. Approaches to Discourse. Oxford: Blackwell.

Van Dijk, Teun (Ed.). 1997. Discourse as Social Interaction. London: Sage Publications.

Conversational Postulates

Cameron, Deborah. 2001. Working With Spoken Discourse. London: Sage.

Grice, Paul. 1975. Logic and conversation. In Syntax and Semantics, Vol. 3, Speech Acts, ed. P. Cole and J. Morgan. New York: Academic Press, pp. 41-55.

Directives and Responses in Context

Blum-Kulka, Shoshana. 1997. Discourse pragmatics. In Discourse as Social Interaction, ed. T. Van Dijk. London: Sage Publications.

Blum-Kulka, Shoshana and Juliane House. 1989. Cross-cultural and situational variation in requesting behavior. In Cross-cultural pragmatics: Requests and Apologies, ed. S Blum-Kulka, J. House and G. Kaspar. New Jersey: Ablex Publishing Corporation.

Searle, John. 1975. Indirect speech acts. In Syntax and Semantics, Vol. 3, Speech Acts, ed. P. Cole and J. Morgan. New York: Academic Press, pp. 265-277.

Politeness

Brown, Penelope and Stephen Levinson. 1987. Politeness: Some Universals in Language Usage. New York: Cambridge University Press.

Holmes, Janet. 1995. Women, Men, and Politeness. London: Longman.

Watts, Richard. 2003. Politeness. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

 

 

Chapter 5—Communicative Interactions

 

MULTIPLE CHOICE. Choose the one option that best completes the statement or answers the question.

 

  1. Which statement below is true of turn-taking in American conversation?
  • Usually, each person takes several turns in a row before turning the floor over.
  • People usually talk at the same time for long stretches of the conversation.
  • There are usually long gaps between each turn.
  • People sometimes briefly talk at the same time at the transition of turns.
  • Each person in a multi-party conversation will get the same number of turns.

Answer: D             p. 102-103

 

  1. Which of the following people is most likely to have the longest turns in American conversation?
  • a woman
  • a child
  • a high-status person
  • a low-status person
  • none of them as turns in American conversation are usually of equal length

Answer: C             p. 103

 

  1. What effect do tag questions have on conversational structure?
  • They help end the conversation.
  • They keep the speaker’s turn going.
  • They prevent another interlocutor from entering the conversation.
  • They bring a topic of conversation to a close.
  • They end the speaker’s turn and select another speaker.

Answer: E             p. 103

 

  1. Which option below contains a tag question?
  • Is it snowing right now?
  • It’s getting late, don’t you think?
  • Do you want to meet for lunch tomorrow?
  • Where is the closest bus station?
  • What do you want to eat for dinner?

Answer: B             p. 103

 

  1. People use backchannel cues in conversation to indicate that
  • they want to speak.
  • they are about to end their turn.
  • they want to change topics.
  • they are trying to start a conversation.
  • they are paying attention.

Answer: E             p. 103

 

  1. What is one way Cree conversational structures differ from those of American-Canadians?
  • Cree speakers have a longer pause between turns.
  • Cree speakers have a shorter pause between turns.
  • Cree speakers do not pause between turns.
  • Cree speakers do not use backchannel cues.
  • Cree speakers do not engage in turn-taking.

Answer: A             p. 104

 

 

 

 

  1. What is the purpose of repetition in conversation?
  • It allows speakers to stall while they think.
  • It connects turns of talk.
  • It is used for humorous effect.
  • It demonstrates that the addressee is listening.
  • All of the above.

Answer: E             p. 105

 

  1. What does the maxim of quantity state?
  • Speakers should be relevant.
  • Speakers should avoid ambiguity.
  • Speakers should be informative.
  • Speakers should take brief turns.
  • Speakers should be truthful.

Answer: C             p. 107

 

  1. What does the maxim of relation state?
  • Speakers should be relevant.
  • Speakers should avoid ambiguity.
  • Speakers should be informative.
  • Speakers should take brief turns.
  • Speakers should be truthful.

Answer: A             p. 107

 

  1. According to Gordon and Lakoff (1971), directives must meet certain __________ in order to be considered legitimate.
  • downgrader conditions
  • felicity conditions
  • repetition conditions
  • politeness conditions
  • honorific conditions

Answer: B             p. 109

 

  1. Which option below is an example of an imperative?
  • May I have some coffee?
  • Could you make me some coffee?
  • I want some coffee.
  • Bring me some coffee.
  • That coffee looks delicious.

Answer: D             p. 110

 

  1. Which option below is an example of a permission directive?
  • I need to make a call.
  • Can you make a call for me?
  • I forgot my cell phone.
  • May I use your phone?
  • Do you have a phone?

Answer: D             p. 110

 

  1. Which option below is an example of a hint?
  • The dog is getting pretty stinky.
  • Does the dog need a bath today?
  • Please wash the dog today.
  • Could you wash the dogs today?
  • Wash the dogs!

Answer: A             p. 110

 

  1. Examine the following sentence: We need to get started on dinner.

This sentence is an example of a(n) ___________ directive.

  • hearer-oriented
  • speaker-oriented
  • speaker- and hearer-oriented
  • group-oriented
  • impersonal

Answer: C             p. 111

 

  1. Examine the following sentence: Could I use the car tomorrow?

This sentence is an example of a(n) ___________ directive.

  • hearer-oriented
  • speaker-oriented
  • speaker- and hearer-oriented
  • group-oriented
  • impersonal

Answer: B             p. 111

 

  1. Examine the following sentence: It would be great if this report could get printed today.  

This sentence is an example of a(n) ___________ directive.

  • hearer-oriented
  • speaker-oriented
  • speaker- and hearer-oriented
  • group-oriented
  • impersonal

Answer: E             p. 111

 

  1. Examine the following sentence: I’m sorry to ask you this, but could you help for just a moment?

This sentence is an example of the speaker using a ___________ strategy.

  • bald on-record
  • positive politeness
  • neutral politeness
  • negative politeness
  • off-record

Answer: D             p. 116

 

  1. Examine the following sentence: So, when do we get to try your famous barbecued hamburgers, buddy?

This sentence is an example of the speaker using a ___________ strategy.

  • bald on-record
  • positive politeness
  • neutral politeness
  • negative politeness
  • off-record

Answer: B             p. 116

 

  1. Examine the following sentence: Hand me that tape measure.

This sentence is an example of the speaker using a ___________ strategy.

  • bald on-record
  • positive politeness
  • neutral politeness
  • negative politeness
  • off-record

Answer: A             p. 116

 

  1. When do Japanese speakers use humbling forms in their utterances?
  • When referring to themselves.
  • When referring to their family members.
  • When referring to the family members of certain interlocutors such as doctors and professors.
  • Both A and B.
  • Both B and C.

Answer: D             p. 123

 

 

IDENTIFICATION/SHORT ANSWER. Write the word or phrase that best completes each statement or answers the question.

 

 

  1. Utterances that typically occur in a set order, such as questions and answers or requests and refusals, are known as ___________.

Answer: adjacency pairs    p. 103

 

  1. People use ___________ to let other people in the conversation know they would like to speak next.

Answer: turn-entry devices                p. 103

 

  1. When errors occur in conversation, people use ___________ to fix them so that the conversation begins flowing smoothly again

Answer: repair mechanisms              p. 103

 

  1. The maxim of quality states that people should be __________ in conversation

Answer: truthful                  p. 107

 

  1. The maxim of __________ states that people should be brief, orderly, and avoid ambiguity in their utterances.

Answer: manner

 

  1. Utterances intended to get the hearer to do something are called ___________.

Answer: directives               p. 107

 

  1. Politeness strategies that involve avoiding imposing on the hearer are called ___________ politeness strategies.

Answer: negative                p. 116-117

 

  1. Politeness strategies that involve expressing solidarity with the hearer are called ___________ politeness strategies.         119

Answer: positive

 

  1. Politeness strategies exist to mitigate ___________, or utterances that risk imposing on the hearer.

Answer: face-threatening acts (FTAs)             p. 116

 

  1. Some languages express politeness through __________, or the use of special markers on nouns, verbs, and modifiers to show deference to the addressee.

Answer: honorification/honorifics   p. 122

 

 

TRUE/FALSE. Write ‘T’ if the statement is true and ‘F’ if the statement is false.

 

 

  1. Conversation is structured and based on turn-taking in all languages.

Answer: TRUE    p. 102

 

 

  1. Malagasy speakers adhere to the maxim of quantity because they readily share new information with other community members.

Answer: FALSE   p. 107

 

  1. English does not use syntactic strategies to mitigate directives, so English speakers must rely on pragmatic strategies to soften directives.

Answer: FALSE   p. 111-113

 

  1. In Malagasy, indirect speech is favored for directives.

Answer: TRUE    p. 112

 

  1. In Japanese, men tend to use more polite language than women.

Answer: FALSE   p. 124

 

 

ESSAY. Write a well-organized essay of [will vary: between 50–100 words] for each of the questions below. Make sure your essay has an introductory and concluding sentence and evidence from class to back up your points as necessary.

 

 

  1. Compare and contrast the conversational structures that govern Cree conversations with those that are used in American-Canadian interactions.

Answers will vary.              p. 104-106

 

  1. Compare and contrast the acquisition of directives by children learning Hungarian and Norwegian and discuss how the use of directives changes as the children grow older.

Answers will vary.              p. 112

 

  1. Explain how the Akan of Ghana and the Malagasy of Madagascar mitigate face-threatening acts.

Answers will vary.              p. 120-121

 

  1. Describe the ways that Japanese speakers show deference and humility and in which situations each method of politeness is used.

Answers will vary.              p. 123

 

  1. Explain how politeness in Japanese is affected by age, gender, and context.

Answers will vary.              p. 122-123

 

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