Politeness Strategies Employed By Americans and Russians When Declining an Invitation

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This paper examines the features of discourse Americans and Russians employ when declining an invitation. It contains the results of an empirical comparative study conducted among 126 American and 120 Russian respondents. Based on the Politeness Theory by P. Brown and S. Levinson, as well as the Principle of Politeness by G. Leech, it shows that in both communicative cultures the speech act of declining an invitation is regarded as an act that can threaten the addressee’s positive face, which is why it is carried out with the use of positive politeness strategies serving to mitigate a possible face threat. It also reveals a number of differences in the use of the above mentioned strategies by Americans and Russians. Knowing these features can be effective to improve proficiency in discourse and, thus, develop cross-cultural communicative competence. The main research methods used are contextual analysis, discourse analysis, experimental method, comparative and statistical analysis, a survey research, semantic, quantitative and qualitative analysis.

About the authors

E B Schelchkova

Peoples’ Friendship University of Russia

Email: kshcha@inbox.ru
Department of Foreign Languages Philology Faculty


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Copyright (c) 2015 Щелчкова Е.Б.

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