Publication details [#63047]

Zhu, Wuhan. 2017. A cross-cultural pragmatic study of rapport-management strategies in Chinese and English academic upward request emails. Language and Intercultural Communication 17 (2) : 210–228.
Publication type
Article in journal
Publication language
Place, Publisher


This paper debates and compares how Chinese and English postgraduate students manage a harmonious relationship with university instructors by managing rapport and doing relational work in their academic request emails. The rapport-management strategies were examined and then further judged in relation to the taxonomies of relational work within the discourse, illocutionary and stylistic domains. It found that Chinese and British students belong to distinct discourse communities molded by different and similar discursive practices and norms, which are conditioned not only by different national cultures, but also by a similar community culture. The findings should be able to (1) evolve the extant research alike and display how the email behaviour reflects the complex and dynamic factors of rapport management; (2) back integrating the theories of rapport management and relational work into methodologically sound cross-cultural/intercultural pragmatic studies; (3) permit email writers to preserve or increase harmonious relationships with recipients so as to attain request compliance smoothly and to maintain their membership within the discourse community and (4) aid readers to acquire the pragmatic aspects of native and foreign languages in workplaces.