Publication details [#63673]

Michno, Jeff. 2017. Greeting and leave-taking in Texas. Perception of politeness norms by Mexican-Americans across sociolinguistic divides. Spanish in Context 14 (1) : 1–27.
Publication type
Article in journal
Publication language
Place, Publisher
John Benjamins
Journal DOI


The present study reveals how 16 Mexican-Americans residing in Texas perceive and follow politeness norms (e.g. Brown and Levinson 1987; Locher and Watts 2005; Scollon and Scollon 2001) related to greetings and leave-takings in different cultural and linguistic contexts. Data from online questionnaires identify a significant difference in perceived level of social expectation (i.e. politeness) for employing the speech acts with Spanish- versus non-Spanish speakers. The data support previous research in identifying a sense of solidarity among Mexican-American extended families, but also suggest that this bond extends to other Spanish-speaking acquaintances. Better understanding of these norms should facilitate inter-cultural exchanges between linguistic in- and out-group members.