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POLITENESS FORMULAS IN CHINESE AND KOREAN

Abstract

This study involved two steps: (1) A contrastive analysis approach was used to identify cases of equivalence, non-equivalence, and partial (or overlapping) equivalence in semantic content, illocutionary force, and rules of use among some common Chinese and Korean politeness formulas for four types of speech acts-greeting, leave taking, apologizing, and thanking. Among other findings, the contrastive analyses demonstrated the major influence of Chinese on Korean politeness formulas. (2) A brief survey, which asked native-speaking Chinese (n=5) and Koreans (n=5) to guess the meanings of politeness formulas written in the other language, was used to investigate how a common knowledge of Chinese characters might help or interfere with the understanding of those formulas. The results of the survey seemed to be largely predictable from the contrastive analyses, supporting the usefulness of the contrastive approach. It is suggested that politeness formulas may be a good starting point for teaching Korean to Chinese or Chinese to Koreans because of the many overlaps that occur, even though the two languages are very different in other respects.

How to Cite

Cherng, C. & Tyson, R., (1994) “POLITENESS FORMULAS IN CHINESE AND KOREAN”, Journal of Second Language Acquisition and Teaching 2, p.14-27.

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Authors

Chiou-Yau Cherng (Tainan, Taiwan)
Rodney Tyson (Ewha Woman's University (Seoul))

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Creative Commons Attribution 4.0

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This article has been peer reviewed.

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