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Title: Le désaccord et la critique entre amis : stratégies d'adoucissement dans le discours pré-conflictuel
Author: Riou, Lucie
Awarding Body: University of Exeter
Current Institution: University of Exeter
Date of Award: 2013
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The objective of this study, based on the theories of Facework (Goffman 1967) and Politeness (Brown & Levinson 1978, 1987), is to observe and establish a classification of mitigating strategies used by two groups of friends to express and deal with disagreement and criticism in French. After a critical review of the development of sociopragmatics and of essential notions for the analysis of interactions, the concept of mitigation is presented, including mitigation used in the context of disagreement and criticism. The fieldwork and the transcription process and new conventions are then presented and discussed. For the analysis, three episodes from recordings of naturally-occurring conversations between friends were selected and transcribed. The data were analysed and classified in context with a view to defining both the pragmatic functions of the various mitigators and how they tend to be used by the speakers. The results of the analysis have allowed us to establish a classification of micro-mitigating-strategies within macro-strategies, and to show that speakers were able to mitigate disagreement and criticism, in order of descending frequency, by converging towards the interlocutor, by using modalised forms, by using a didactic, clarificatory speech style, but also by realising a "décrochage énonciatif" (enunciation disconnection) and trying to avoid or minimise the Face Threatening Acts. These observations contribute to the study of mitigating disagreement and criticism among friends, provide initial evidence of a considerable variation in the use of mitigating strategies in conversational French and call for further analysis of this type of conversation in order to determine to what extent these uses of mitigators result from a social behaviour specific to this type of interactional situation or speech acts.
Supervisor: Coveney, Aidan; Boughton, Zoë Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: sociopragmatics ; FTA ; politeness ; facework ; disagreement ; criticism ; mitigation