Routine politeness in American and British English requests: use and non-use of please

Murphy, M Lynne and De Felice, Rachele (2017) Routine politeness in American and British English requests: use and non-use of please. Journal of Politeness Research. ISSN 1612-5681 (Accepted)

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Abstract

This paper looks at the use and non-use of please in American and British English requests. The analysis is based on request data from two comparable workplace email corpora, which have been pragmatically annotated to enable retrieval of all request speech acts regardless of formulation. 675 requests are extracted from each of the two corpora; the behaviour of please is analysed with regard to factors such as imposition level, sentence mood, and modal verb type. Differences in use of please between the two varieties of English can be accounted for by viewing this as a marker of conventional politeness rather than face-threat mitigation in British English, and of relationship asymmetry in American English.

Item Type: Article
Schools and Departments: School of English > English
Subjects: P Language and Literature > P Philology. Linguistics > P0101 Language. Linguistic theory. Comparative grammar
P Language and Literature > P Philology. Linguistics
P Language and Literature > PE English
P Language and Literature > PE English > PE1001 Modern English
Depositing User: Lynne Murphy
Date Deposited: 06 Feb 2017 13:38
Last Modified: 08 Mar 2017 08:49
URI: http://sro.sussex.ac.uk/id/eprint/66601

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