HONORIFIC TITLES IN BRITISH ENGLISH AND AMERICAN ENGLISH

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Abstract


Our modern, globalized world is developing along the path expanding the cooperation in economic, political, social and cultural life. The result of this interaction is the rapid growth of cultural exchanges and direct contacts between state institutions, social groups and individuals of different countries and cultures. The interrelation of language and culture plays an important role in communication both between the members of one group and with the representatives of other cultures. English is a global language and the term “English as an International Language” (EIL) corresponds to British English (BrE), American English (AmE), Canadian English (CanE), and Australian English (AusE). The present paper aims at showing differences between the usage of honorific titles in two varieties of the English language - American and British - relating to address forms used in everyday interaction and explaining the differences through social and interpersonal relations, cultural values and politeness strategies. The recent study of address forms is relevant as it helps us to find out speaker’s cultural peculiarities and to determine different usage of honorific titles in AmE and BrE. We draw on G. Hofstede’s Cultural dimensions (1991), Politeness theory (Brown and Levinson 1987, Hickey and Stewart 2005, Leech 2014), Intercultural pragmatics (Kecskes 2014, Wierzbicka 1991/2003). The data has been obtained through observation, questionnaires and interviews which contained a number of questions and situations, covering different social contexts: everyday communication with interlocutors of different age, sex and occupation. The study focuses on the main tendencies which illustrate the impact of culture on the usage of honorific titles in American English and British English.


About the authors

Julia B Yuryeva

RUDN University

Author for correspondence.
Email: yureveyb@gmail.com
6, Miklukho-Maklaya Str., Moscow, Russia, 117198

PhD student of the department of foreign languages, RUDN University; academic interests: comparative linguistics, pragmatics, discourse analysis, methods of teaching foreign languages

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