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Impoliteness in language - Derek Bousfield

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Impoliteness in language - studies on its interplay with power in theory and practice
Derek Bousfield
Paperback / softback
De Gruyter Mouton
UK Publication Date

The volume addresses the enormous imbalance that exists between academic interest in politeness phenomena when compared to impoliteness phenomena. Researchers working with Brown and Levinson's ([1978] 1987) seminal work on politeness rarely focused explicitly on impoliteness. As a result, only one aspect of facework/relational work has been studied in detail. Next to this research desideratum, politeness research is on the move again, with alternative conceptions of politeness to those of Brown and Levinson being further developed. In this volume researchers present, discuss and explore the concept of linguistic impoliteness, the crucial differences and interconnectedness between lay understandings of impoliteness and the academic concept within a theory of facework/relational work, as well as the exercise of power that is involved when impoliteness occurs. The authors offer solid discussions of the theoretical issues involved and draw on data from political interaction, interaction with legally constituted authorities, workplace interaction in the factory and the office, code-switching and Internet practices. The collection offers inspiration for research on impoliteness in many different research fields, such as (critical) discourse analysis, conversation analysis, pragmatics and stylistics, as well as linguistic approaches to studies in conflict and conflict resolution.

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Derek Bousfield, University of Huddersfield, UK; Miriam A. Locher, University of Bern, Switzerland.

"What is noteworthy in this volume is that the authors build on, modify, expand on, and even challenge one another's position, using ample cross-referencing, participating in this way in a 'discursive struggle' at a different level. The editiors must be credited for an impressive volume that takes on board all current concerns of impoliteness researchers working within more socially oriented theoretical frameworks."
Maria Sifianou in: Language in Society 39/2010

"Overall, this volume is a very valuable contribution to a novel and developing field of research. There are a number of important inputs that advance understanding of the interaction between relational activity and power from a range of institutionalized and hierarchical settings that could potentially be tweaked and cross-applied to further situations. As an introduction to the field of impoliteness and as a basis for further exploration in this area, the volume is without comparison - literally!"
Kerry Linfoot in: Linguist List 20.2344

Keyword Index
Politeness (Linguistics)|Power (Social sciences)|Interpersonal communication.
Country of Publication
Number of Pages

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