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POLITENESS STRATEGIES IN VIETNAMESE LANGUAGE A REFLECTION OF L A case study of Vietnamese address terms

LIN8015 Introduction to Sociolinguistics Course Examiner: Noah Mbano Presenter: Anh Phan

CONTENTS
1 1 Introduction to Politeness [ From worldview to Vietnamese culture] 1 2 Vietnamese Politeness Strategy: tactfulness

3 1 4 1

Vietnamese Politeness Strategy : Address term Usage, Important Categories & Examples

Vietnamese Politeness Strategy Address Terms Discussion

Introduction
From the "Universal" Politeness
Politeness = diplomatic strategy of communication (Kummer, 1992: 325) Purpose to achieve social coordination and sustain communication (Janney and Arndt, 1992: 223)

4 main theories
Grices Conversational Maxims
Leechs Politeness Principles

Lakoffs Politeness Rules

Brown and Levinsons Universal Model of Politeness

From the "Universal" Politeness


Dont impose [Strategy of Distance / Impersonality]

Politeness Cooperative Principle Rules


(1975)

Give options [Strategy of Deference / Hesitancy]

Make A feel good [Strategy of Camaraderie / Informality]


Figure 2. Representation of Lakoff s Politeness Rules and Strategies Lakoffs (1973, 1990)

Figure 1. Representation of Grices Maxims

From the "Universal" Politeness


Wx = D (S, H) + you P (H, S) + Rx I want to want/need/respect/admire me
+

the Weightiness formula I want you to love/admire what I want/love/admire In this formula:

x : theI selected speech act want you to admire/love/approve of what I do S : the speaker H : the hearer I want my full freedom in everything I do/say/think emotionally invested can be Model of Politeness P : the perceived power difference between Universal I want you speaker not to impose on me/mine lost/maintained/enhanced Main focus: the hearer and the must bepoliteness strategic D : the perceived social distance should/should between Do not tell me what I can/cannot/ not constantly attended to in (intentionally and consciously do/say/think them interaction (p. 61). used as a strategy to gain/get R : the cultural ranking of the speech Figure 3. Representation of Brown & Levinsons concept of Face act. something; i.e. a request)
Face

From the "Universal" Politeness

Tact maxim: minimize () the cost to other; maximize (+) the benefit to other.

Generosity maxim: () benefit to self, (+) cost to self.

Approbation maxim: () dispraise of other, (+) praise of other.

Modesty maxim: () praise of self, (+) dispraise of self.

Agreement maxim: () disagreement between self and other, (+) agreement between self and other.

Sympathy maxim: () antipathy between self and other, (+) sympathy between self and other.

Introduction
to Eastern-oriented Politeness
Western

Strategic Politeness
Lifestyle

Eastern
a concern for duty (what is owed to the group) (Pham & Pham, 2012)

individual rights

Politeness Viewpoint of Chinese Language


Self-Denigration Maxim (denigrating the self and elevating the other) [Modesty] Address Maxim (individual choice of suitable terms when addressing interlocutors) (Gu, 1990)

Introduction
indexing group-oriented Social & preserving negligible role of negative face relational & social order Direct (Vu, 1997) Including: Self-oriented Identical Address Maxim L php (respectfulness (resemble to Chinese) respect to people of higher Age & social status oriented power) ng mc (propriety / Politeness Viewpoint of Vietnamese: Western Vietnamese proper respect to people of a private or an a public image that is Two Implied Kinds of Politeness equal and power) internalized property on loan to individuals Respectful Politeness (index social relationships, respect to lower status and solidarity) from society Mao (1994: 453) (Vu speech 1997, 1999) Strategic Politeness (immediate communicative goals & intents in specific events)
Society and senior

Western

A special of case Universal Politeness A definition L of (Li) Confucian ideology and values Vietnamese Networking

and Vietnamese Politeness

(Nguyen and Ho, 2013)

Vietnamese Politeness Strategy: tactfulness


Popular Enquiry Topic in Vietnamese Greeting
Anh i }u y? Lifestyle Where are you going? Expressing
Opinion

, ti i ng ny mt t. Uhm, I go this way awhile.


the quid of betel (and areca-nut)

[No need to supply detailed answer.] Western directness [No need to know where the other man goes.] Vietnamese lead inthe & bush greeting tradition: beating about

indirect speaking way to

asking and replying

Vietnamese Politeness Strategy Address term usage


indispensable index of social relationships and expresses respect for and conformity to power and the social hierarchy (Nguyen & Ho, 2013)

influenced by interlocutor's social role + obligations

by intention

= personal pronouns, kinship terms, status terms, and proper nouns (Luong, 1990; Cooke, 1968; Nguyen, 1999; Cu, 2001).
no-naming style (ni trng khng) severely violates social norms [popular nowadays in younger generation]

Address Terms Important Categories & Examples


(Interchangeable using of same kind) 1st person Singular form: ti/tao/t/ta/mnh 1st person Plural form: chng ti/chng tao/chng t 2nd person Singular form : m{y/mi/ngi 2nd person Plural form : chng my/ bay/chng bay/chng mi 1st and 2nd Person Plural form: Chng ta/ta 3rd Person Singular form: n/hn/y/va 3rd Person Plural form: chng n/chng hn/h/chng a lack of deference + high degree of arrogance towards the addressee My ch l a h n! Youre such a naughty boy!

Vietnamese Politeness Strategy

Personal Pronouns

intimacy/familiarity, among close friends of the same age i chi nh my! Lets go out!

Ngo (2006)

Address Terms Important Categories & Examples


Kinship Terms
relatives or nonrelatives in address and selfreference (basing on ranking, age, gender and social status thirdparty reference (plus y) i.e. ch y (she) suitable choice of words Express politeness Luong (1990: 37)
pretty older than speaker
(M) (M/F) (M/F)

Vietnamese Politeness Strategy

older than parents

(M/F) (F) (M) (M) (F)

younger than speaker

younger than parents + much older than speaker

(F)

Gender: Male (M), Female (F)

Dos

Vietnamese Politeness Strategy Address Terms Discussion

How to gain politeness strategically < compliance with such social rules > - Address terms role: help minimize disadvantages & maximize advantages of the situation achieve communicative goal - linguistic choices to display l php / ng mc among interlocutors + keeping distance & solidarity in conformity with speaker-hearer relationship nature - Frequent practice of using appropriate address terms Respectful + Strategic Politeness Achievement

The consequence of no-naming style - Showing disrespect - Not well-educated Communication goals not fully achieved

References