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Cross-Cultural Analysis of Face-Enhancing Acts : The Strategies for Offering in English and Japanese


Bibliographic Information

Other Title
  • 高揚的発話行為の日英対照分析 : 提供表現の方略について
  • コウヨウテキ ハツワ コウイ ノ ニチエイ タイショウ ブンセキ : テイキョウ ヒョウゲン ノ ホウリャク ニ ツイテ


This study contrastively analyzed the speech act of offering in American English and Japanese. Expressions for an offer were categorized into three patterns according to the propositional contents. Such patterns were further studied by analyzing strategic elements in the scope of pragmatics such as indirectness and face-work, the central points of politeness theory. An offer may be a Face-Enhancing Act (FEA), an inherently polite speech act, satisfying the hearer's desire to be approved of by the speaker, while a request, laying a burden on the hearer, is considered to be an inevitably Face-Threatening Act (FTA). Not to offend the hearer, the speaker tries to modify this FTA impact by employing politeness. The present study, however, reveals that for performing an offer, Americans employed an indirect strategy similar to their FTA. On the other hand, the Japanese made an offer distinctive from their FTA by employing more directness and self-defensive comments. However, such an assertive tone was softened by their worries about the hearer's liking for that which is offered, henceforth “the proffer." This technique was often used in Japanese language and contrastive to the English expression informing the speaker's hope that his/her proffer would gratify the hearer.

本論文において、英語と日本語における「提供」という発話行為を分析した。まず、両言語において、命題内容に基づき、提供表現を3つに範疇化した。次に、それぞれの範疇における表現を、間接性や丁寧方略という語用論的側面から、さらに分類した。これまで、言語丁寧性の研究は、依頼表現のようなFace-Threatening Act(FTA)という脅威的発話行為(相手に悪い事)の分析が中心課題となってきた。これは、相手に行動を要求することで、依頼表現が相手に負担を負わせることになり、それなりの配慮が伴われるからである。一方、提供表現は、相手に有益な物を与えるFace-Enhancing Act (FEA)、すなわち高揚的発話行為(相手に良い事)であり、その行為自体が丁寧と考えられ、丁寧性の研究の対象となりにくかった。しかしながら、英語話者は、FTAと同様、FEAにおいても、間接的表現を使用する傾向が見られた。日本語話者は、FEAで直接的表現や自己防衛的表現を用いることで、FTAとの違いを見せた。日本語のほうが英語よりも、押しが強い語調が生じたものの、提供物の好き嫌いに関する表現的配慮においては、英語よりも不明瞭な語調が生じた。


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