Publication details [#14047]

Sifianou, Mary. 1990. Linguistic politeness: the state of the art. Glossologia 9-10 : 183–194. 12 pp.
Publication type
Article in journal
Publication language
Place, Publisher
Department of Linguistics, University of Athens


This paper provides us with a presentation of the most salient theories of politeness and attempts to question certain points within these theoretical approaches. Emphasis is placed on the universality of politeness, which is considered a controversial topic, according to the writer. It is supported that there are culture-specific aspects that cannot be ignored when characterizing behaviors as polite or impolite and when displaying generosity or tact. In turn, the cultural differences give rise to differentiated linguistic devices which need to be investigated further.