Polite requests in English and Chinese business correspondence in Hong Kong

N. T., Lorrita YEUNG

    Research output: Journal PublicationsJournal Article (refereed)Researchpeer-review

    43 Citations (Scopus)

    Abstract

    This paper examines the use of polite requests in both English and Chinese business correspondence in Hong Kong. The analysis makes use of the three factors of imposition, social distance and relative power in Brown and Levinson's (1987) theory of politeness. It is found that only the factor of imposition has a statistically significant impact on linguistic choice in the English data. There is also a significant effect when all three factors are combined. But none of the factors, either alone or combined, shows any statistically significant effect in the Chinese corpus. The results are attributed to the special characteristics of the type of discourse investigated, the particular socio-cultural factors involved, as well as the way the three factors are defined conceptually.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)505-522
    Number of pages18
    JournalJournal of Pragmatics
    Volume27
    Issue number4
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 1 Apr 1997

    Fingerprint

    Linguistics
    Hong Kong
    social distance
    sociocultural factors
    politeness
    Industry
    linguistics
    discourse
    Business Correspondence
    Imposition
    Social Distance
    Politeness
    Cultural Factors
    Discourse Types

    Cite this

    YEUNG, N. T., Lorrita. / Polite requests in English and Chinese business correspondence in Hong Kong. In: Journal of Pragmatics. 1997 ; Vol. 27, No. 4. pp. 505-522.
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    Polite requests in English and Chinese business correspondence in Hong Kong. / YEUNG, N. T., Lorrita.

    In: Journal of Pragmatics, Vol. 27, No. 4, 01.04.1997, p. 505-522.

    Research output: Journal PublicationsJournal Article (refereed)Researchpeer-review

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