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Politeness is a Problem? Clarity and Miscommunication in Pilot-ATC Interaction
Unformatted Document Text:  Aviation Politeness 5 wants are the basic identity desires of the individual actors. These wants are universal B all societal members have them and all societal members are aware that other members have them as well. Brown and Levinson (1978) divide face wants into two categories: A positive @ and A negative. @ Positive and negative face are defined as follows: A Negative face: the want of every > competent adult member = that his [her] actions be unimpeded by others. Positive face: the want of every member that his [wants] be desirable to at least some others @ (Brown & Levinson, 1978, p. 67). Negative face reflects human desires for autonomy and freedom from imposition. Positive face reflects human desires to be accepted, praised, and complimented by others. Brown and Levinson (1978) argue that all human interaction is face threatening. Even seemingly benign actions threaten face. Compliments or praise may lead to embarrassment (threat to positive face). Inviting a person to dinner may feel like an imposition (threat to negative face). There are limitless opportunities to threaten either kind of face. Brown and Levinson (1978) identify such actions as A face threatening acts @ or FTAs. FTAs are intrinsic. The very nature of the act has the potential to create a loss of face. FTAs can threaten the speaker and/or the hearer, and threaten positive and/or negative face. FTAs are intrinsically problematic. From a pragmatic perspective, the person who is about to commit an FTA is in a bit of a dilemma: A How can I reach my goal(s) in interaction if the very nature of interaction is face threatening? @ Rather than avoid FTAs, Brown and Levinson (1978) found that speakers commit them using a variety of polite strategies. Brown and Levinson (1978) identify five basic strategies for handling FTAs (presented in order of decreasing politeness): (a) don = t do the FTA, (b) go off record, (c) use negative politeness, (d) use positive politeness, and (e) go baldly on record. The focus of this study, however, is on who uses

Authors: howard, john.
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background image
Aviation Politeness 5
wants are the basic identity desires of the individual actors. These wants are universal
B
all
societal members have them and all societal members are aware that other members have them as
well. Brown and Levinson (1978) divide face wants into two categories:
A
positive
@
and
A
negative.
@
Positive and negative face are defined as follows:
A
Negative face: the want of every
>
competent adult member
=
that his [her] actions be unimpeded by others. Positive face: the want
of every member that his [wants] be desirable to at least some others
@
(Brown & Levinson, 1978,
p. 67). Negative face reflects human desires for autonomy and freedom from imposition. Positive
face reflects human desires to be accepted, praised, and complimented by others.
Brown and Levinson (1978) argue that all human interaction is face threatening. Even
seemingly benign actions threaten face. Compliments or praise may lead to embarrassment
(threat to positive face). Inviting a person to dinner may feel like an imposition (threat to
negative face). There are limitless opportunities to threaten either kind of face. Brown and
Levinson (1978) identify such actions as
A
face threatening acts
@
or FTAs. FTAs are intrinsic.
The very nature of the act has the potential to create a loss of face. FTAs can threaten the speaker
and/or the hearer, and threaten positive and/or negative face.
FTAs are intrinsically problematic. From a pragmatic perspective, the person who is
about to commit an FTA is in a bit of a dilemma:
A
How can I reach my goal(s) in interaction if
the very nature of interaction is face threatening?
@
Rather than avoid FTAs, Brown and Levinson
(1978) found that speakers commit them using a variety of polite strategies. Brown and Levinson
(1978) identify five basic strategies for handling FTAs (presented in order of decreasing
politeness): (a) don
=
t do the FTA, (b) go off record, (c) use negative politeness, (d) use positive
politeness, and (e) go baldly on record. The focus of this study, however, is on who uses


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