Author: Pak, Wai-man Raymond
Title: An analysis of (im)politeness strategies in complaint letters
Other Title: An analysis of impoliteness strategies in complaint letters
Advisors: Warren, Martin (ENGL)
Degree: M.A.
Year: 2016
Subject: Letter writing -- China -- Hong Kong.
English newspapers -- China -- Hong Kong.
Complaint letters -- China -- Hong Kong.
Hong Kong Polytechnic University -- Dissertations
Department: Department of English
Pages: 92 pages
Language: English
Abstract: This research study examines the redressive language use for complaint letters. The research is carried on the complaint letters in Hong Kong English newspaper. The main intention of a complaint letter in a newspaper is to point out the problems of some organization or individual. The act of writing a complaint letter to a newspaper is face-threatening in nature. The use of politeness strategies can soften the face-threatening acts of the complaints. On the other hand, the impoliteness strategies can damage the face of the complainee. The analysis of this research is done in three steps. First, all the complaint letters are studied to find out the politeness and impoliteness strategies using Brown and Levinson's (1987) politeness strategies and Culpeper's (1996 & 2011) framework of impoliteness strategies. Second, each part of the letters is divided into one of three different moves and the politeness and impoliteness strategies in each move are studies carefully. Third, all the complaint letters are divided according to two parameters: size of the complaint and writers' viewpoint. This classification allows us to further analyze the use of strategies in different contexts. It is very important to note that the use of politeness strategies is not the same as the kindness and that impoliteness strategies do not mean to cause offensive. These strategies sometimes required for communicating more effectively in professional writings.
Rights: All rights reserved
Access: restricted access

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