Politeness in Mexico and the United States

A contrastive study of the realization and perception of refusals

| Indiana University
ISBN 9789027254153 | EUR 99.00 | USD 149.00
ISBN 9789027291448 | EUR 99.00 | USD 149.00
This book explores the issue of politeness phenomena and socially appropriate behavior in two societies, Mexico and the United States, in three different contexts: refusing invitations, requests, and suggestions. In addition to a state-of-the-art review of the speech act of refusals in numerous languages, the book provides a rigorous analysis of data collection methods utilized to examine speech act behavior at the production and perception levels. Many examples of native speaker interactions illustrate the similarities and differences observed in the realization patterns and the perception of refusals by Mexicans and Americans in formal and informal situations. The data are analyzed in terms of refusal sequences and pragmatic strategies which are strategically used to carry out relational work during the negotiation of face. The results of the quantitative and qualitative analyses are interpreted in light of the notions of face, politeness, and relational work in Mexico and the United States. This publication will be of interest to researchers and students in pragmatics and discourse analysis, cross-cultural communication, and sociology.
[Pragmatics & Beyond New Series, 171]  2008.  xiv, 195 pp.
Publishing status: Available
Table of Contents
“In Politeness in Mexico and the United States, Félix-Brasdefer presents a well-argued, well-written analysis of refusal speech act sequences and perceptions of refusals in two languages and cultures — Spanish in Mexico (Tlaxcala) and English in the United States (Minnesota). It is an important contribution to the field of cross-cultural politeness research, and it is a valuable resource for sociolinguists who work on and in Spanish. [...] Félix-Brasdefer's study of refusals in Spanish and English is an important and valuable study of cross-cultural politeness, essential for anyone interested in Spanish language variation and linguistic politeness. A particular strength of the book is its clarity, both in the description of the methodology and in the articulation of the analysis. The study is innovative in its combination of several important elements.”
“Contrasting how Mexicans in Mexico and Americans in the U.S. use politeness strategies in dealing with matters such as “face”, this volume provides insights into similarities and differences between these two speech communities in terms of how people perceive societal values such as “involvement” and “independence”. The book also constitutes a valuable model for how research tools such as verbal report can be used to enhance the findings from research on pragmatic behavior. The book will undoubtedly be read with keen interest by both researchers and students of pragmatics alike.”
“It is a very valuable contribution to sociolinguistics because it demonstrates important distinctions in refusal acts between speakers of Mexican Spanish and US English. Awareness of these differences can contribute to a reduction in cross-cultural conflict as well as improvement in second-language pedagogy. Moreover, its all-embracing literature review, methodology, and insightful discussion of the results make it an essential reference for cross-cultural refusal research. A valuable set of references, an author index, and a subject index complement this excellent study.”
“This carefully designed study provides a valuable comparison of refusals in Mexican Spanish and American English. Data triangulation enables the author to investigate not only the production of refusals but also their perception in both cultures, the latter a welcome, largely neglected focus in intercultural pragmatics to date. In addition, the discourse-based perspective taken treats refusals as sequences rather than as single utterances, a perspective which facilitates in analysing their intricate complexity. The book will undoubtedly represent an important resource for future studies in the area.”
Cited by

Cited by 33 other publications

No author info given
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Félix-Brasdefer, J. César & Sean McKinnon
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Hernández Flores, Nieves
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Kaiser, Heather R.
2018. Intimacy matters. Journal of Language Aggression and Conflict 6:2  pp. 271 ff. Crossref logo
Katinaitė, Donata & Inga Hilbig
2021. Lithuanian Refusals and Politeness. Respectus Philologicus :39 (44) Crossref logo
Li, Wei
2022. Saying “no” in emails in Mandarin Chinese and Australian English. Journal of Politeness Research 0:0 Crossref logo
Lin, Ming-Fang
2014. An Interlanguage Pragmatic Study on Chinese EFL Learners’ Refusal: Perception and Performance. Journal of Language Teaching and Research 5:3 Crossref logo
Lin, Ming-Fang, Miao-Hsia Chang & Yu-Fang Wang
2021. “How Dare You Have Another Relationship!”: An analysis of cross-cultural and interlanguage corrections . International Review of Applied Linguistics in Language Teaching 59:4  pp. 449 ff. Crossref logo
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2020.  In Introduction to Instructed Second Language Acquisition,  pp. 166 ff. Crossref logo
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2017.  In The Pragmeme of Accommodation: The Case of Interaction around the Event of Death [Perspectives in Pragmatics, Philosophy & Psychology, 13],  pp. 319 ff. Crossref logo
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2017. Greeting and leave-taking in Texas. Spanish in Context 14:1  pp. 1 ff. Crossref logo
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Mulo Farenkia, Bernard
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2018. Refusals in Early Modern English drama texts. Pragmatics. Quarterly Publication of the International Pragmatics Association (IPrA) 28:2  pp. 253 ff. Crossref logo
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2013. The effect of study abroad on the pragmatic development of the internal modification of refusals. Pragmatics. Quarterly Publication of the International Pragmatics Association (IPrA) 23:4  pp. 715 ff. Crossref logo
Ren, Wei
2014. A Longitudinal Investigation into L2 Learners’ Cognitive Processes during Study Abroad. Applied Linguistics 35:5  pp. 575 ff. Crossref logo
Solís García, Inmaculada & Nicoletta Santoni
2021. «¿Y si empezamos por arriba a la derecha?» The Functioning of Proposals in Task-Oriented Dialogues in Spanish and Italian . Rassegna iberistica :116 Crossref logo
Živković, Ema
2021. Variation in refusal strategies produced by English and Serbian speakers. Studia Neophilologica 93:3  pp. 269 ff. Crossref logo

This list is based on CrossRef data as of 20 april 2022. Please note that it may not be complete. Sources presented here have been supplied by the respective publishers. Any errors therein should be reported to them.

Subjects & Metadata
BIC Subject: CFG – Semantics, Pragmatics, Discourse Analysis
BISAC Subject: LAN009000 – LANGUAGE ARTS & DISCIPLINES / Linguistics / General
ONIX Metadata
ONIX 2.1
ONIX 3.0
U.S. Library of Congress Control Number:  2007040711 | Marc record