Politeness (Key Topics in Sociolinguistics)

Politeness (Key Topics in Sociolinguistics)

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Richard J. Watts
Cambridge University Press, 9/25/2003
EAN 9780521794060, ISBN10: 0521794064

Paperback, 320 pages, 21.6 x 14 x 1.9 cm
Language: English

During the fifteen years prior to the first publication of this book, existing models of linguistic politeness generated a huge amount of empirical research. Using a wide range of data from real-life speech situations, this introduction to politeness breaks away from the limitations of those models and argues that the proper object of study in politeness theory must be commonsense notions of what politeness and impoliteness are. From this, Watts argues, a more appropriate model, one based on Bourdieu's concept of social practice, is developed. The book aims to show that the terms 'polite' and 'impolite' can only be properly examined as they are contested discursively. In doing so, 'polite' and 'impolite' utterances inevitably involve their users in a struggle for power. A radically new account of linguistic politeness, the book will appeal to students and researchers in a wide range of disciplines, in linguistics and the social sciences.

1. Introducing linguistic politeness
2. Politeness through time and across cultures
3. Modelling linguistic politeness I
4. Modelling linguistic politeness II
Brown and Levinson and their critics
5. Facework and linguistic politeness
6. A social model of politeness
7. Structures of linguistic politeness
8. Relevance Theory and concepts of power
9. Politic behaviour and politeness in discourse
10. Politic behaviour and politeness within a theory of social practice
Glossary of terms