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Title: Interpreting linguistic politeness from British Sign Language to English
Author: Mapson, Rachel Patricia
ISNI:       0000 0004 5914 9520
Awarding Body: University of Bristol
Current Institution: University of Bristol
Date of Award: 2015
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This thesis explores the way im/politeness is interpreted from British Sign Language into spoken English. This aspect of interpreting may significantly impact on the dynamics of interpreted interactions, due to differences in the way im/politeness is both produced and received in the varied situations in which interpreters work. The study draws on rapport management theory (Spencer-Oatey 2005, 2008) and the concept of social networks (Watts 2003) to frame the complex and multiple considerations involved. Qualitative data were generated through a series of semi-structured group discussions centred on interpreting im/politeness, involving eight highly experienced professional BSL/English interpreters. Data were analysed thematically to identify how interpreters recognise im/politeness in BSL, the key influences on the way they interpret im/politeness and the interpreting strategies they might employ. To underpin this study, foundational research to explore how politeness is expressed in BSL was conducted, involving interviews with five Deaf participants. Analysis reveals that interpreters' knowledge about politeness in BSL and interpreting politeness is generally tacit and hard to articulate, and suggest the benefits of explicit tuition on the subject. The multiple influences on interpreters' evaluations of im/politeness are dynamic, and coalesce differently in each interpreted interaction. Context emerges as a multi-layered influence that relates to not only the environment but also the characteristics, language use, goals and expectations of the people involved. Interpreters' strategies may involve smoothing their interpretation to better ensure that the interactional goals are met and to manage rapport between clients. The affordance of interpreters' familiarity with the context, and their clients, provides a valuable resource that informs interpreters' decisionmaking and strategy choices; a particular benefit given the temporal pressure of simultaneous interpreting. The study contributes theoretically to im/politeness research and interpreting studies, and has practical value for interpreting professionals, both within initial interpreter training programmes and continuing professional development.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available