Linguistic Politeness

  • 1 Positive Face
  • Chapter 1


    Over the last three decades, politeness has become one of the central discussions in pragmatic and sociolinguistic researches. A large number of theoretical, empirical books and articles about linguistic politeness that have been published, shows that politeness has become one of the most active areas of research in language use.

    Don't use plagiarized sources. Get your custom essay on

    “Linguistic Politeness”

    Get custom essay

    Although the interest of politeness in both social and linguistic phenomenon significantly increased, many recent studies choose to drawn on conversational data, it was surprised that is only small numbers of scholars focused to study politeness in written text such as scientific written text rather than on conversational data recently.

    Even though the main stream of linguistic politeness is generally associated with social behaviour as strategic conflict avoidance, and the major concept of politeness theory is an arrangement of politeness strategies along a continuum from least polite to most polite, also allows them to engage in conflict-free communication, and it usually found in the study of conversational using speaker-hearer model of interactions. Many scholars do not realize that this politeness model also can be extended to other medium not only through verbal communication but also in a written material in terms of the interactions of the or authors and audiences in scientific texts.

    Furthermore, the advances of politeness models to some genres of scientific written texts is somehow interesting and in the other hand complex field to study. Greg Myers[1] (1989) in his study found that the model proposed by Brown and Levinson was very useful to explain how he interpret some construction of the norm of scientific culture found in writing, particularly academic writing.

    Brown and Levinson (1978/1987) present their study as part of the linguistic project of showing universals in language usage; the striking parallels in politeness devices between three unrelated languages shows that while the expressions of politeness may vary enormously from one culture to another, and the basic hierarchy of politeness strategies is not a culture specific.

    Brown and Levinsons (1987: 58) constructed a system in which a model person is endowed with negative and positive face; roughly the want to be unimpeded and the want to be approved of in certain respects. The model person also has a rational faculty for choosing the course of action that will give the highest pay-off with the least loss of face, evaluating three variables; the social distances (D); the relative difference in power between the speaker and hearer (P); the rank of imposition (R). These three basic variables seem still affective to help understanding the interactions of politeness between writers and readers in written text. Brown and Levinsons (BL) theory has been extensively used and also criticised. Although most of the scholars that studied politeness are agree that specific factors like power, social distance or status, influence the adoption of strategies, it is still difficult to provide definite conclusions.

    Moreover, by using Myers “room of thinking” above that linked to what Brown and Levinson had proposed in their study, this research tries to focus on the politeness strategies employed by the economists’ authors in academic journals, by concerning that at this time academic journals had reached a fabulous numbers both digital and printing material and also become a major references by scholars all over the world. On the other hand, the scholars that deeply focused to study the academic journals in the pragmatics or discourse analysis area says; politeness it’s still rare.

    By viewing that chances the researcher hopes that this study is able to contribute to the existing pool of knowledge on politeness strategies used in academic writing, particularly which in the writing of economic journal articles of two identified economic journals.

    1.1 Statements of the Problem

    Started in the early 1950’s, Schuler studied about the politeness in Germany and Goffman studied on “face work” in 1955. Nowadays, the study about politeness has become one of the major areas of pragmatics or sociolinguistics. Classical theories of linguistic politeness clarifies such as Lakoff (1973, 1977), Brown and Levinson (1987), Leech (1983) agree that linguistic politeness can be used as a strategic conflict avoidance.

    Linguistic politeness not only was applied by many people via verbal communication but also through the medium of written material both in academic or non academic fields, politeness persuasion in journal writing as a genre in academic writing somehow in line with the demands of the academic community that expects scientific language to be objective and formal. Further, the use of politeness persuasion or strategies in journal issues by particular people from different culture background, age and economic basic education is interesting field to discuss.

    Based on that statement above the main purposes of this study beyond the limits of this paper, to give an exhaustive overview of politeness-related research are to identify sort of politeness strategies employed by economist authors and analyze the politeness kinds of strategies in economic journal articles both local and international economic journal.

    1.2 Objective of the Study

    In recent years there has been a steady increase in interest and research into economics discourse by both economists and linguists which has spawned an expanding body of work. The nature of this work in part reflects not only the varied academic backgrounds of the writers, but also the evolutionary development of linguistics in general and its sub-discipline of discourse analysis in particular. This body of work is not only in hope succeeding clarify many of the ways that economists use language to express themselves in polite way, but also can be use to help the public to understand the politeness style of writing from the economist in the scientific text.

    Furthermore based on the explanation above, this present study tried focused in identify politeness strategies employed by authors of economic journal communities both local and international economic journals, by proposing the objectives below;

    1. To investigate how economists use language to present findings in polite way

    2. To investigates the use of politeness strategies in economics text

    3. To compare the use of politeness strategies in a local and international economic journals

    1.3 Research Question

    Brown and Levinson (1987) have developed a theory of politeness to explain the nature of politeness phenomena in language. Through this exploratory study, the researcher will focus on the existence of linguistic politeness in economic articles. For this purpose the researcher study the selected local and international economic journals. The researcher focused on specific areas in these journals that the researcher feels exemplifies the existence of politeness strategies.

    Based on the explanation above, the present study aims to answer the following question:

    1. What kinds of politeness strategies are employed by authors in local and international economic journal articles?

    2. In what ways are local and international journals similar or different in the use of politeness strategies?

    1.4 Significance of the study

    Politeness has become one of the fields of research to which more attention has been devoted in the last two decades. The connections of politeness studies with other domains, such as sociolinguistics, socio pragmatics, ethnography of communication, second language teaching/acquisition or conversational analysis, have definitely contributed to this growing interest and its exploratory study, the researcher choose to focus on the existence of politeness strategies n economic journals.

    Since the early 1980s, the discussion of various controversial issues in the economics discourse community has led to increasing debate among concerned economists about the ways that they communicate with each other, as well as with non-economists.

    Royce (1995) in his paper[2] mentions that; Although economics is considered to be a science and its language is often close to scientific language, within evidence the texts are often complemented by graphs. The influence of literary discourse is predominant.

    In 1986, Donald McCloskey published The Rhetoric of Economics and republished in 1998. McCloskey considers economic discourse as "a language comprised of tropes; a word or phrase used in a sense not proper to it, tales and other rhetorical devices that are literary and rhetorical or persuasive rather than scientific or natural”.

    The specific aim of this research also to show that was an increasing awareness of the nature of economics discourse by both applied linguists and economists, For the purposes above, the research studies one locally and one international economic journal, published by economic associations from Malaysia and USA. This research try not to deeply focus on particular specific area what economist and linguist arguing about, but more on general issues of economic that become content respectively in these journals, that researcher feels exemplifies the existence of politeness strategies.

    1.5 Scope and Limitation of The Study

    This present study will limit its data from selected journals released by economic associations from local and international to find out politeness strategies employed by the economists in two identified Economic journals, namely, Malaysia Journal of Economic Studies and the Journal of Economic Growth released by Malaysian Economic association and American economic association respectively.

    The corpus from those journal were chosen from the five year latest issues, start from 2004 until 2008 whereas this present study start it work. Here the study also limits its scope only on the content of the articles. The areas of Mathematical language, formula as well as footnote in the articles will be not included to analyze in this present study.

    1.5 Theoretical Framework

    The present section presents the theoretical framework of the present study. Brown and Levinson (1987) have developed a theory of politeness to explain the nature of politeness phenomena in language. According to them, it is possible to define generic types of politeness strategies to explain and predict the adoption of politeness in oral or written discourse.

    Since the present study tries to focuses on the analyzing a politeness in written material that is academic journal both from local or international well known economic journals. The writer tries to use a formula that construct by Greg Myers (1989) in his articles “The Pragmatic Of Politeness In Scientific Articles” in line with what Brown and Levinson (1987) proposed in their book “Politeness; Some Universal in language Usage’ as underlying theoretical structure.


    Review of Related Literature

    2.0. Introduction

    The phenomenon of interest in politeness both social and linguistic has been significance increase over the last three decades as evidenced by the numbers of paper have appeared on the subject in international journal and monographs. The present research mostly, still based on Brown and Levinson’s politeness theory (1978, 1987). The recent published literature on Brown and Levinson’s model concerns two main aspects, which are the concept of politeness itself and the claims for universality on the one hand, and diverse criticism or modification of one of the elements of the model on the other; mainly the concepts of face, face-threatening act, and the factors that determine the production and interpretation of politeness, in the other hand.

    The notions of face, face threatening act (FTA) and politeness as well as the ways in which the phenomenon of politeness is realized in language usage have been extensively exploited who are concerned with linguistic pragmatics; Leech, 19983; Kasper, 1990; Brend 1978; Brown; 1988; Schmidt, 1980; Carrel and Konnoker, 1981; Ferguson, and many other scholars have explore the notions of face.

    Since the main focus of this present study is trying to put economic issues written by economist in economic journals related with politeness strategies as a main topic to discuss, the researcher in this chapter, will try to discuss about the theory of politeness, and explains about the terms related to the main topic, such as the different forms of face, FT[3]A and the factors seems to be interrelated in politeness system that also useful in studying politeness strategies in written material such as academic journal.

    2.1 The Theory: A Brief Overview

    Brown and Levinson’s (1978, 1987) theory of politeness has become the “model against which most research on politeness defines itself”. Central to BL’s theory is the concept of face, as proposed by Goffman (1967) who defined face as:

    “…the positive social value of a person effectively claims for himself by the line others assume he has taken during a particular contact. Face is an image of self delineated in terms of approved social attributes -albeit an image that others might share, as when a person makes a good showing for his profession or religion by making a good showing for himself .(Goffman 1967: 5)

    BL define (1978:66) face as something that is emotionally invested and the face can be lost, maintained or enhanced and it must be constantly attended to in interaction, BL categorize politeness as either positive politeness or negative politeness and tie both strategies to the importance of face in every culture. They define ‘face’ as “the public self-image that every member wants to claim for himself”

    Furthermore The main focus of BL (Brown and Levinson)[4] study as part of the linguistic project of showing universals in language usage; They construct a system in which a model person is endowed with negative and positive face; and tie both strategies to the importance of face in every culture. They define ‘face’ as “the public self-image that every member wants to claim for himself” roughly the want to be unimpeded and the want to be approved of in certain respects (1987: 58).

    According to Brown and Levinson, “face wants” may consist of negative or positive face. When speakers appeal to positive face wants (i.e. the desire to be appreciated and approved of), they employ positive politeness language that emphasizes “in-group identity, shows concern, and seeks areas of agreement”. Compliments represent typical positive politeness strategies.

    When speakers appeal to negative face wants (i.e. the desire to be free from imposition and distraction), they use negative politeness strategies that seeks to reduce any imposition, such as apologies that represent the type negative politeness strategies. Further, basically in most situations, everyone seeks “to maintain each others’ face”. Thus, communicating effectively involves saving face-both for the speaker-identified by Brown and Levinson as (S) and for the addressee (H) or speaker and hearer. However, Brown and Levinson point out that S and H are mitigated by three other factors: power, social distance, and imposition. For example, S will speak more politely when the target (H) has more power than S, when the social distance between the two is great, and when the imposition is high.

    Before going further the following section tries to explain the first four politeness strategies of Brown and Levinson’s with some examples, based on several studies done in the past that are related to the present study of politeness.

    Brown and Levinson identify five “super strategies” used to communicate. They list strategies from the most direct/impolite (bald-on-record) to the least direct/impolite (being silent).

    2.1.1 Politeness Strategies

    According to Brown and Levinson (1978:65), certain acts can damage or threaten another person’s face and these acts are referred to as face threatening acts (FTAs). An FTA[5] has the potential to damage the hearer’s positive or negative face or the act may damaged the spaker’s own positive or negative face. In order to reduce the possibility of damage to the hearer’s or the speaker’s face s/he may adopt certain strategies ; these strategies BL call politeness strategies (1978: 65). Politeness strategies can be divided into four main strategies: Bald-on-record, positive politeness, negative politeness and off-record strategies.

    Being polite therefore consists of attempting to save face for another, although all cultures have face as Brown and Levinson claim, all cultures do not maintain face in the same way. Brown and Levinson also claim that understanding cultural norms of politeness enables communicators to “make strong predictions” about communicating effectively within a culture, also politeness strategies are developed in order to save the hearers’ "face." Face refers to the respect that an individual has for him or herself, and maintaining that "self-esteem" in public or in private situations. The functions are to avoid embarrassing the other person, or making them feel uncomfortable. Politeness strategies are developed for the main purpose of dealing with FTA.

    Next each of the strategies of BL’s theory will be presented separately first Bald on record, then positive politeness, next negative politeness and finally off record strategies Bald on record

    According to Brown and Levinson(1978: 74), Bald on record strategy is a direct way of saying things, without any minimisation to the imposition, in a direct, clear, unambiguous and concise way, for example “Do.X!”. Bl claim that the prime reason for bald on record usage may be stated simply: in general, whenever the speaker wants to do FTA with maximum efficiency more than s/he wants to satisfy hearer’s face, even to any degree, s/he will choose the bald on record strategy.

    There are different kinds of bald on record usage in different circumstances, because the speaker can have different motives for her/his want to do the FTA with minimum efficiency. The motives falls into two classes where the face threat is not minimised, where face is ignored or is irrelevant and 2) where in doing the FTA baldly on record, the speaker minimises face threats by implication. BL (1978: 100)

    Brown and Levinson (ibid,. 1978: 100) give examples of bald on record strategy and say that direct imperatives are clear examples of bald on record usage. Imperative are often softened with hedges or conventional politeness markers, eg: “please send us the offers”. Verb “do” is used with imperatives, like in “Do call us”. What BL call bald on record strategies might involve simply following the Gricean maxims, whereas politeness strategies would involve violating the maxims in specific way (Watss, Ide and Ehlich 1992:7) Positive politeness

    Unlike negative politeness, Positive politeness is not necessarily redressive of the particular face infringed by the FTA; that is whereas in negative politeness the sphere of relevant redress is restricted to the imposition itself, in positive politeness the sphere of redress is widened to the appreciation of alter’s want in general or to the expression of similarity ego’s and alter’s want.

    The positive politeness is usually seen n groups of friends, or where people the given social situation know each other fairly well, it usually tries to minimize the distance between them, by expressing friendliness and solid interest in the hearer’s need to be expected (minimize FTA)

    According to Brown and Levinson (1978: 106) positive politeness is redress directed to the addressee’s positive face, his/her perennial desire to the his/her wants – or actions acquisitions, values resulting from them -should be thought of as desirable. BL describe that the redress consists in partially satisfying that desire that one’s own wants – or some of them are in some respects similar to the addressee’s wants. BL also notes that unlike negative politeness, positive politeness is not necessarily redressive of the particular face want infringe by the FTA. In other words whereas in negative politeness the sphere of relevant redress is restricted to the imposition itself, in positive politeness the sphere of redress is widened to the appreciation of alter’s wants in general or to the expression of similarity between ego’s and alter’s wants .

    “. . .the linguistic realizations of positive politeness are in many respects simply representative of the normal linguistic behaviour between intimates, where interest and approval of each others personality, presuppositions indicating shared wants and shared knowledge, implicit claims to reciprocity of obligations or to reflexivity of wants, etc. Are routinely exchanged. Perhaps the only feature that distinguishes positive politeness redress from normal everyday intimate language behaviour is an element of exaggeration; this serves as a marker of the face-redress aspect of positive politeness expression by indicating that even S can’t with total sincerity say “I want your wants” he can at least sincerely indicate “I want your positive face to be satisfied

    Brown and Levinson (1978: 106)

    BL add the element of insincerity in exaggerated expressions of approval or interest [6] As in : “how absolutely marvellous and exquisite your roses are ,Mrs.Pete” is compensate for by the implication that the speaker really sincerely wants Mrs. Pete’s positive face to be enhanced. This perspectives of intimacy is interesting when considering articles in economic journal between authors and audiences is not usually very intimate and if it were, intimacy would be disregard while doing a scientific claim. In this sense, it could be expected that not many strategies of positive politeness would be used or are used rarely in article economic journals BL also explain that the association with intimate language usage gives the linguistic of positive politeness its redressive force. They claim that positive politeness utterances are used as a kind of metaphorical extensions of intimacy, to imply common ground or sharing of wants to a limited extension of intimacy, to imply common ground or sharing of wants to a limited extent even between strangers who perceive themselves for the purposes of the interaction as somehow similar. This is true when considering economic articles, in fact some times authors and audience[7] has similar knowledge in general or purpose in common.

    BL also point out that the positive politeness techniques are usable not only for FTA redress but in general as a kind of accelerator, where S, in using them, indicates s/he wants “to come closer” to H or audiences. BL divide positive politeness into three strategies; claiming the common ground, conveying that sender and receiver are co-operators and fulfilling receiver’s want. . Negative Politeness

    When Brown and Levinson define negative politeness, they say that it is a redressive action addressed to the addressee’s negative face: addressee’s want to have addressee’s freedom of action unhindered and addressee’s attention unimpeded. Furthermore According to BL (1978:134) Negative politeness is the heart of respective behaviour, just as positive politeness is the kernel of “familiar” and “joking” behaviour. Negative politeness corresponds to the rituals of avoidance. Where positive politeness is free-ranging, negative politeness is specific and focused; it performs the function of minimizing the particular imposition that the FTA unavoidable effects, BL also argue that negative politeness is the kind of politeness used between acquaintances whereas positive politeness is used between closer friends.

    Negative politeness is the most elaborate and the most conventionalized set of linguistic strategies for FTA redress; it fills the etiquette books although positive politeness gets some attention. Further according to BL (1987: 135) the linguistic realization of negative politeness – conventional indirectness, hedges on illocutionary force, polite pessimism[8], the emphasis on hearer’s relative power – are very familiar and need no introduction.

    In addition , BL say that the negative politeness outputs are all forms usefull in general for social “distancing”[9]: they are therefore likely to be used whenever a speaker or sender wants to put a social brake on the course of interaction. BL, see five main categories as the linguistic realization of negative politeness; communicating sender’s want not to impinge the receiver, not coercing receiver, not presuming/assuming, being (conventionally in) direct and redressing receiver’s wants. Off Record

    Brown and Levinsons (1978:216) define off record strategy as a communicative act which is done in such a way that is not possible to attribute one clear communicative intention to the act. In this case the actor leaves her/himself an “out” by providing her/himself with a number of defensible interpretations, s/he cannot be held to have a committed himself to just one particular interpretation of her/his act. In other words, BL claim, the actor leaves it up to the addressee to decided how to interpret act.

    Further, BL continue that such off record utterances are essential indirect uses of language. One says something that is either more general (contains less information in the sense that it rules out fewer possible states of affairs) or actually different from what one means (intend to be understood). BL continue claim that in both cases the hearer must make some inference to recover what was in fact intended. For example, if somebody says: “it is hot in here”, the hidden meaning of the utterance can be request to open the window or to switch on the fan.

    BL, (1978: 230-232), list inviting conversational implicatures as one main strategy of off record-ness and its subcategories are; giving hints, giving association clues, presupposing, understating, overstating, using tautologies, using contradictions, being ironic, using metaphors, and using rhetorical question. The other main strategy of going off record is being vague or ambiguous and its subcategories are being ambiguous, being vague, over-generalising, displacing hearer and being incomplete.

    2.1.2 Face

    Politeness theory states that some speech acts threaten others’ face needs. The concept of ‘face’ has come to play an important role in politeness theory. Brown and Levinson, for example, have chosen it as the central notion for their study of universals in language usage and politeness phenomena (1978, 1987). Brown and Levinson says that they have derived the notion of ‘face’ from Ervin Goffman in social interaction.

    Our notion of ‘face’ is derived from that of Goffman and from the English folk term, which ties up face notions of being embarrassed or humiliated, or ‘losing face’. Thus face is something that is emotionally invested, and that can be lost, maintained or enhanced, and must be constantly attended to in interaction. In general, people cooperate (and assume each other’s cooperation) in maintaining face in interaction, such cooperation being based on the mutual vulnerability of face


    In 1963, Erving Goffman published the article "On Face Work" where he first created the term “face.” He discusses face in reference to how people present themselves in social situations and that our entire reality is constructed through our social interactions. Face is a mask that changes depending on the audience and the social interaction (Goffman, 1967). Face is maintained by the audience, not by the speaker. We strive to maintain the face we have created in social situations. Face is broken down by Goffman into two different categories. Positive face is the desire of being seen as a good human being and negative face is the desire to remain autonomous. Moreover he argues that there is a limited amount of strategies to maintain face.

    Face in communicative events is a universal concept, but it is employed in culture specific ways. It is defined in psychological, philosophical and symbolic terms, “the term face may be defined as the positive social value a person effectively claims for himself by the line others assume s/he has taken during a particular contact”. Face generally involves interlocutors’ mutual recognition as social members of a society. Face can be lost, maintained, or enhanced and must be constantly attended to in interaction.

    Brown and Levinson (1978; 1987), presented politeness as a formal theoretical construct based on earlier work on ‘face’ by sociologist Goffman, (1963) as already mentioned above, BL said that we are all motivated by two desires: (positive face), and (negative face). The working definition and examples on both negative and positive face presented below. Negative Face

    The negative face is the maintenance and defence of one’s territory and freedom from imposition. The negative face is an inalienable. Negative face is the desire to be autonomous and not to infringe on the other person. Negative politeness is designed to protect the other person when negative face needs are threatened. Thus there are different strategies to handle face threatening acts and these strategies are put into a hierarchy of effectiveness. Positive Face

    The positive face, on the other hand, is the claim for the recognition and appropriate validation of one’s social self-image or personality. The positive face is the want of every member that his wants be desirable to at least some other members of the society. Also is the desire to be liked and appreciated. Positive politeness is designed to meet the face needs by performing an action like complimenting or showing concern for another person (Held 1989 and O’Driscoll 1996) FTA

    Holtgraves and Yang (1992) defines politeness as phrasing one’s remarks so as to minimize face threat. Here, Face Threatening Act (FTA) is acts like promises, apologies, expressing thanks, ven non verbal acts such as stumbling, falling down or any utterance that intrinsically threatens another’s face (positive or negative) and includes disagreement, criticism, orders, delivery of bad news, and request. For examples; simple request threaten the target’s negative face because the target’s compliance with the request interferers with his/her desire to remain autonomous. Criticism threatens his/her desire for approval

    Furthermore, Brown and Levinson (1987) propose that when confronted with the need to perform a FTA, the individual must choose between performing the FTA in the most direct and efficient manner, or attempting to mitigate the effect of the FTA on the hearer’s positive/negative face. The mitigation strategies are what BL labelled as politeness strategies.

    2.1.3 Politeness Systems

    Since Goffman’s (1967) work, politeness has become one of the most active areas of research in language use. The literature on the subject is mammoth-like, the research on politeness falls into three categories: (1) work that constructs theories of politeness, such as Lakoff (1973, 1977), Brown and Levinson (1987), Leech (1983), Fraser (1990), and Escandell-Vidal (1996); (2) work that investigates cultural- specific concepts and strategies of politeness, such as Hill et al. (1986), Gu (1992), Lindenfeld (1990), and Sherzer (1983); (3) work that applies existing theories to data from various cultures, such as Chen (1993, 1996), Garcia (1989), Rhodes (1989), and Holmes (1990). Although these researchers differ in important ways, they share a common focus on politeness system, that specific factors influence the adoption of strategies. Similar with Scollon and Scollon (1981) proposed the face relationships into three politeness systems namely; Difference, solidarity and hierarchical. An explanation on those politeness systems presented below. Difference politeness system

    In this model the interlocutors see themselves at the same social level with no interlocutor exerting power over the other (-Power), but with a distant relationship (+Distance). As a result, both interlocutors use independence strategies, including expressions that minimize threat to avoid the risk of losing face. Solidarity Politeness System

    In this model, interlocutors see themselves as being of equal social position (-Power) and with a close relationship (-Distance); in this system, the interlocutors use involvement strategies to assume or express reciprocity or to claim a common point of view. Hierarchical politeness system

    In this model, one participant is superiordinate position (+Power) and the other is in subordinate (-Power). In this asymmetrical system, where the relationship may be closer or distant (-Distance or +Distance), scollon and scollon (1981) observed that while the participant with power may use involvement strategies; the participant in a lower position may employ independence strategies to minimize threat or to show respect to the interlocutor.

    2.2 Discourse analysis as an approach

    The term discourse analysis is very ambiguous, since its introduction to modern science, the term discourse has taken various, sometimes very broad meanings. So in this study the researcher refer mainly to the linguistic analysis of occurring connected speech or written discourse also connected with language usage in social context.

    Inline with this present study limitations as mention above. Carter gives explanations in which he use to define what discourse analysis is. He mention that discourse analysis is a primarily linguistic study, examining the use of language by its native population whose major concern is investigating language functions along with its form, produced both orally and writing.

    Further, discourse analysis, as a branch of applied linguistic, attempts to find patterns in communicative products as well as their correlation with the circumstances in which they occur, which are not explainable at the grammatical level. Moreover, identification of linguistic qualities of various genre, vital for their recognition and interpretation, together with cultural and social aspects which support its comprehension are the domain.

    The focus of discourse analysis is the conversation (the spoken or written word) and the main topic of interest is the underlying social structure contained within the conversation, identity categories, ideas, views, roles, and so on within text itself

    2.2.1 Working definitions of Discourse Analysis

    In this section the researcher, put some definition and field of discourse below, that could be useful to understand discourse generally and the approach of this study specifically What is Discourse

    Talking about discourse, there is no agreement among linguists as to the use of the term discourse in that some use it in reference to texts. Common perception that the originally the word ‘discourse’ comes from Latin ‘discursus’ which denoted ‘conversation, speech’. Thus understood,

    Many scholars try to use or proposed a definition or terminology explanations about what really discourse about; Crystal (1992:25) proposed a definition: "Discourse: a continuous stretch of language larger than a sentence, often constituting a coherent unit such as a sermon, argument, joke, or narrative". On the other hand (Dakowska 2001:81) being aware of differences between kinds of discourses indicates the unity of communicative intentions as a vital element of each of them. Consequently she suggests using terms ‘text’ and ‘discourse’ almost interchangeably betokening the former refers to the linguistic product, while the latter implies the entire dynamics of the processes.

    Not only is discourse difficult to define, but it is also not easy to make a clear cut division of discourse as such. Therefore, depending on the form linguists distinguish various kinds of communicative products. A type of discourse might be characterized as a class of either written or spoken text, which is frequently casually specified, recognition of which aids its perception, and consequently production of potential response (Cook 1990:156).

    Since it is not easy to unambiguously clarify what a discourse all about in terms of similar perception, in other hand most of the scholars agree that discourse relates more to parole, always produced by somebody whose identity, as well as the identity of the interpreter, and discourse always happens in either physical, or linguistic context and within a meaningful fixed time, whereas language does not refer to anything. Consequently, only discourse may convey messages thanks to language which is its framework.

    Further, Beaugrande (1981) proposed a theory that suggested Seven criteria which have to be fulfilled to qualify either a written or a spoken text as a discourse, in order to make clear the part of discourse in this study, Beaugrande propose these criteria below:

    Ø Cohesion – grammatical relationship between parts of a sentence essential for its interpretation;

    Ø Coherence – the order of statements relates one another by sense.

    Ø Intentionality – the message has to be conveyed deliberately and consciously;

    Ø Acceptability – indicates that the communicative product needs to be satisfactory in that the audience approves it;

    Ø Informativeness – some new information has to be included in the discourse;

    Ø Situationality – circumstances in which the remark is made are important;

    Ø Intertextuality – reference to the world outside the text or the interpreters’ schemata;

    2.2.2 Spoken Discourse

    The term discourse analysis has been used interchangeably in two separate context; spoken discourse and written discourse. Both are differences in types, the differences between speech and writing that writing includes some medium which keeps record of the conveyed message while speaking involves only air, there are certain dissimilarities that are less apparent.

    Speech develops in time that the speaker says with speed that is suitable for him, even if it may not be appropriate for the listener and though a request for repetition is possible, its difficult to imagine a conversation in which every sentenced is to be rephrased. Moreover, talking might be spontaneous which results in mistakes, repetition, sometimes less coherent sentences where even grunts, stutters or pauses might be meaningful.

    The speaker usually knows the listener(s) or s/he is at least aware of the fact that he is being listening to, which enables him to adjust the register, a the interlocutors are most often in face-to-face encounters unless using phone might be. They take advantage of extra linguistic signals as grimaces, gesticulation expression such as “here”. “now” or “this” are used.

    2.2.3 Written Discourse

    in contrast, writing develops in space in that it needs a means to carry the information. The author of the text does not often know who is going to read the text he produced; as a result he cannot adjust to readers’ specific expectations. The writer/author is frequently able to consider the content of his work for almost unlimited period of time which makes it more coherent, having complex syntax. What is more, the reader/audiences might not instantly respond to the text, ask for clarification, hence neat message organization, division to paragraphs, layout are of vital importance to make comprehension easier. Additionally, owing to the lack of context expressions such as ‘now’ or ‘here’ are omitted, since they would be ambiguous as texts might be read at different times and places. One other feature typical of writing, but never of oral discourse, is the organization of tables, formulas, or charts which can be portrayed only in written form (Crystal 1995:291).

    2.2.4 Application Discourse analysis to the Text Interpretation

    Interpretation of a written text in discourse studies might be defined as the act of grasping the meaning that the communicative product is to convey. It is important to emphasize that clear understanding of writing is reliant on not only what the author/writer put in it, but also on what a reader/audiences brings to this process.

    McCarthy (1991) points out that reading is an exacting which involves recipients knowledge of the world, experience, ability to infer possible aims of discourse and evaluate the reception of the text.

    Painstaking research into schemata theory made it apparent that mere knowledge of the world is not always sufficient for successful discourse processing. Consequently, scholars dealing with text analysis redefined the concept of schemata dividing it into two: content and formal schemata

    Further, Content as it refers to shared knowledge of the subject matter, and formal, because it denotes the knowledge of the structure and organization of a text. In order to aid discourse analysis to develop necessary reading and comprehension skill, attention has to be paid to aspects concerning the whole system of a text, as well as crucial grammar structures and lexical items.

    What is more, processing written discourse ought to occur on global and local scale at simultaneously, however, it has been demonstrated that readers employ different strategies of reading depending on what they focus on. Top Down and bottom-up text processing

    Distinguishing noticeably different approaches to text processing led to distinction of manners of attending to written communicative products. Bottom-up processes are those which are involved in assimilating input from the smallest chunks of discourse: sounds in speech and letters in texts, afterwards moving to more and more general features. This technique is frequently applied by lower-level analysts who turn much attention to decoding particular words, thus losing the more general idea, that is the meaning of a given piece of writing. In the same way learning a new language begins: first the alphabet, then words and short phrases, next simple sentences, finally elaborate compound sentences. While it is considered to be a good way of making learners understand the language, a wider perspective is necessary to enable students to successfully produce comprehensible discourse (Cook 1990, McCarthy 1991).

    Alternatively, top-down processing starts with general features of a text, gradually moving to the narrower. This approach considers all levels of communicative products as a total unit whose elements work collectively, in other words, it is more holistic. Not only does the information in a text enable readers to understand it, but it also has to be confronted with recipient’s former knowledge and expectations which facilitate comprehension. It is important to make students aware of these two ways of dealing with written discourse and how they may be exploited depending on the task. When learners are to get acquainted with the main idea of a particular communicative product they should take advantage of top-down approach, while when answering detailed true-false questions they would benefit from bottom-up reading (Cook 1990, McCarthy 1991) Types of text

    Obviously, all texts have a certain feature in common, namely they are indented to convey some meaning. This function, however, might be fulfilled in a number of different ways: a road sign ‘stop’, and a six hundred pages long novel are both texts which might serve that purpose, yet, there are certain characteristics that distinguish them. The above example presents the idea somewhat in the extreme, although, enumerating several other common types of texts might affirm that the notion of text is a very broad one and is not limited to such varieties as those that can be found in language course books (Cook 1990, Crystal 1995).

    Differences between texts might be striking, while menu is usually easy to read, legal documents or wills are not. All of them, however, have certain features that others lack, which if explained by a qualified teacher might serve as a signpost to interpretation. Additionally, the kind of a given text might also provide information about its author, as for example in the case of recipes, warrants or manuals, and indirectly about possible vocabulary items and grammar structures that can appear in it, which should facilitate perception of the text. Having realized what kind of passage learners are to read, on the basis of its title they should be able to predict the text’s content, or even make a list of vocabulary that might appear in the communicative product. Pattern in text

    Having accounted for various kinds of associations between words, as well as clauses and sentences in discourse, the time has come to examine patterns that are visible throughout written communicative products. Patterning in texts contributes to their coherence, as it is thanks to patterns that writing is structured in a way that enables readers to easily confront the received message with prior knowledge. Salkie (1995) indicates that the majority of readers unconsciously make use of tendencies of arranging texts to approach information.

    Among most frequently occurring patterns in written discourses there are inter-alias claim-counterclaim, problem-solution, question-answer or general-specific statement arrangements. Detailed examination of such patterning revealed that problem-solution sequence is frequently accompanied by two additional parts, namely background (in other words introduction) and evaluation (conclusion). While in some elaborate texts the background and the problem might be presented in the same sentence, in other instances , when reader is expected to be familiar with the background, it might not be stated in the text itself. Although both cohesive devices and problem-solution patterns often occur in written communicative products only the former are designated as linguistic means, s ince patterning, when encountered, has to be faced with assumptions, knowledge and opinion of the reader (McCarthy 1991, Salkie 1995).

    One other frequently occurring arrangement of texts is based on general-specific pattern which is thought to have two variations. In the first one a general statement is followed by a series of more specific sentences referring to the same broad idea, ultimately summarized by one more general remark. Alternatively, a general statement at the beginning of a paragraph might be followed by a specific statement after which several more sentences ensue, each of which is more precise than its predecessor, finally going back to the general idea (McCarthy 1991:158).

    As McCarthy (1991) points out, the structure of patterns is fixed, yet the number of sentences or paragraphs in a particular part of a given arrangement might vary. Furthermore, one written text might contain several commonplace patterns occurring consecutively, or one included in another. Therefore, problem-solution pattern present in a text might be filled with general-specific model within one paragraph and claim-counterclaim in another. As discourse analysts suggest making readers aware of patterning might sanitize them to clues which enable proper understanding of written communicative products (McCarthy 1991:161).

    2.3 The language Discourse of economic Journal

    In recent years there has been a steady increase in interest and research into economics discourse by both economists and linguists which has spawned an expanding body of work. The overall aim of this section from this present study is to review the literature on the analysis of economics discourse by economists and linguists perspectives.

    When Analyzing the economist text in the journal we have to concern two things in the text; the first is the literary text (linear) itself and the visual (non-linear) put in the text, both will be explain briefly below also the position of academic journal as genre will be define as the first part in this section

    2.3.1 Discourse of Economist literary

    Since the early 1980s, the discussion of various controversial issues in the economics discourse community has led to increasing debate among concerned economists about the ways that they communicate with each other, as well as with non-economists. This debate has been vigorous, and has also influenced the direction and nature of the research into economics discourse by linguists.

    Economists’ assessments of their own discourse has contributed to a growing awareness by many that the ways they communicate their ideas in economics do not accurately correspond to the ways they actually “do” economics. The major figure amongst those economists who advocate that fellow economists should examine the ways they use their own discourse is Donald McCloskey, an economic historian and economist, whose range of publications dealing with the "rhetoric of economics" (1983, 1984, 1986, 1990), He asserts that economists have two attitudes to their discourse, termed the "official and unofficial, the explicit and implicit" (1986:5), and that the official, explicit attitude (and therefore rhetoric) reflects a scientific methodology which is "modernist", a modernism which consists of "an amalgam of logical positivism, behaviourism, operational, and the hypothetic-deductive model of science" (1983:484).

    McCloskey argues that economists in practice don’t follow the rules as laid down by this official methodology, but in reality argue using the unofficial, implicit rhetoric of economics. He therefore believes that the rhetoric of economics should be examined by those economists who use it, suggesting that the quality of their argument would be at a more sophisticated level if they were more aware of the grounds on which they were arguing, because they claim to be arguing on grounds of certain limited matters of statistical inference, on grounds of positive economics.

    Although McCloskey is an economist who examines the language of economics, his work here is not specifically addressed to his economist colleagues, but more towards those working in the education and applied linguistics discourse communities.

    Other economists besides McCloskey have also been actively examining aspects of economics discourse. Henderson (1986) for example, offers a seemingly parallel, but unconnected examination of the various ways that metaphor in economics can be investigated, stating that they are very common both in economics as a science, and in discussions involving economic policy. Like McCloskey, he examines metaphor as a series of tropes as in metaphor, simile, and analogy, and states that what he terms as "living" and "dead" metaphors are an integral part of the economics lexicon, and are in fact inter-woven into the concept-structure of introductory economics textbooks. Furthermore what McCloskey and Henderson and some economist had done, provides economists’ regarding current views of their own discourse.

    2.3.2. Discourse of Economist Visual

    This section attempts to focus visual information in economics discourse refers to the various drawings, diagrams, graphs, tables, and charts that are used across the spectrum of economics discourse types. Which are generally considered as extra-linguistic. Even though the main focus of this present study not on the economic visual or non-linear text discourse, it much better for us to concern this thing also, as a support explanation of economic language that has a strong relation with literary discourse in the economist report. This part will tries to give an overview of the visual language or non-linear text in the economic text from previous research.

    McCloskey (1986) and Henderson (1986) draw upon principles derived from literary criticism to consider visual information in economics discourse in terms of their use as metaphor. The articles proposed by McCloskey (1986) about rhetoric in economics provides some relatively useful insights into the role and importance of visual information in written economics discourse. His treatment of visual information occurs within the context of his discussion about how economists use literary devices in their "conversations" with each other, thus forming part of the discipline’s rhetorical method.

    Linking the development of this current rhetorical form to the growth of modernism in economic methodology, he argues that although economics “conversation” has been lucid in the past, the most eloquent “conversationalists” have been the economists who have used mathematical (meaning the use of descriptive techniques derived from algebra, geometry, calculus etc.) techniques. They have drawn on model-building procedures and econometric techniques that have been derived from mathematics and/or statistics, and these include not only linear, mathematically-based methods, but also visual forms of representation such as graphs, tables and flow charts.

    Furthermore, McCloskey’s treatment of visual information in terms of literary devices basically precludes him from examining in depth any possible inter-semiotic functional relationship between the visual and verbal modes. This is of course a more linguistic task that he has not set out to do. However, the insights he has provided about the role of visual information in economics are a very instructive confirmation of its importance for the discipline, and provides an awareness of the need to develop the analytical tools to conduct further research in that area.

    In other similar study, Henderson (1986) discovered treatment of visual information also occurs within the context of his discussion of metaphor in economics. Like McCloskey, he draws on aspects of the application of literary criticism, and provides some background on the use of metaphor in the debate over economics methodology and the degree to which economics is a predictive science. He examines metaphor, simile and analogy as a series of tropes under the label of metaphor or "figurative language". It is through his discussion of metaphor, the various examples he gives, and the comments he makes about them that his treatment of visual information is clarified. Metaphor, he claims, contains an implicit "as if" notion, and economic models (which of course are often expressed in a variety of forms of visual information) are also "as if" statements about the world. Henderson gives examples of this in a macroeconomics passage where the economy is seen in a variety of metaphorical ways, one of which is as a set of graphs, the others being as something physical with gaps that need plugging, a ship at sea, a fire, a machine, or a person.

    Henderson’s suggestion that metaphors belong to one of two basic metaphoric traditions in economics, the mechanistic and the organic, also points to the metaphorical role and importance of visual information. The mechanistic metaphoric tradition, according to the examples that Henderson uses, seems to be the one that has facilitated the growth of the use of visual information techniques in economics.

    This can be seen in his discussion of the predictive model of price, where the metaphorical (mechanistic) foundation of price theory is accepted . . . not because we think the economy is a machine but because treating it as if it were a machine has led to the development of a consistent and predictive theory of price by application first of the diagrammatic and later by the mathematical method already implicit in diagrams. (1986:115)

    Here the link between metaphor and visual information is clearly established. Henderson also discusses the difficulties that readers often have in reading and understanding diagrams. He states that people unfamiliar with economics writing will often find the diagrams of supply and demand (line graphs) difficult to understand. They may look reasonably decipherable, but the difficulty for the uninitiated lies in the fact that "….elementary supply and demand diagrams are in fact iconic metaphors.

    Again, this treatment of metaphor in economics discourse and the visual information which is a fundamental part of it , is a useful application of various understandings from the techniques of literary criticism. However, it does not provide any real analytical insights for the linguist attempting to explain the semantic, intersemiotic relationships between the visual and verbal modes.

    Other researchers who have touched on, but not focused specifically on visual information in economics discourse are Mauranen (1993), Tadros (1985), Mead and Henderson (1983), Mason (1990, 1991), Allen and Pholsward (1988), and Cameron (1991). Concerning the nature of economics writing most of those scholars proposed similar idea that Economist, in common with other academic writers, use rhetorical devices in order to persuade readers of their point of view and that there is an intellectual hesitancy to see the use of such devices as acceptable within the conventions of the scientific methods.

    2.4 Academic Journal as a Genre

    The term "academic journal" applies to scholarly publications in all fields; this article discusses the aspects common to all academic field journals. Scientific journal and journals of the quantitative social sciences vary in form and function from journals of the humanities and qualitative social sciences. The function of a journal is to distribute knowledge.

    Academic journal is a peer-reviewed periodical in which scholarship relating to a particular academic discipline is published. Academic journals serve as forums for the introduction and presentation for scrutiny of new research, and the critique of existing research. Content typically takes the form of articles presenting original research, review articles and book reviews.

    In academia, professional scholars typically make unsolicited submissions of their articles to academic journals. Upon receipt of a submitted article manuscript, the journal editor or editors determines whether to reject the submission outright or begin the process of peer-review. In the latter case, the submission becomes subject to anonymous peer-review by outside scholars of the editor’s choosing. The editors use the reviewers’ opinions in determining whether to publish the article, return it to the author(s) for revision or to reject it. Even accepted articles are subjected to further sometimes considerable editing by journal’s editorial staff before they appear in print or online. Typically, because the process is lengthy, an accepted article will not be published and read by the audience immediately, it might be need several months after its initial submission.

    The Audiences of the journal can be grouped into two main categories before and after published. The first category is the primary audience that is editorial board that doing the first screening mostly more than in the body and language of the paper and not the content of the paper. The editorial board or the journal staff has to be ensuring that certain criteria or requirements are met before it sends to the expert or consulting editors for peer-review. In general, editorial board just checks the completeness of the requirement based on the papers guideline.

    The other groups of individuals is the peer reviewers or consulting editors that act as "referees" varies according to each journal’s editorial practice -typically, no fewer than two, and usually at least three outside peers review the article. As stated earlier they are specialist in their fields and it is their evaluation that will determine the outcome of the research, the main options recommend from these consulting are:

    ü Accepted with minor correction

    ü Accepted with Major correction

    ü Rejected

    (Bernas Journal Guideline)

    Accepted with minor correction meant that the paper successfully pass the assessment and qualified to be printed out while second options Accepted with major correction meant that will be returned back to the author to be fixed as soon as possible and the examine again by the consulting boards. While the last options rejected meant that the paper is not qualified to be printed with a particular reasons.

    The second category of audience is the public that can be categories into three ; the first category, general audience, is made up of people with different age groups, sex and ethnic origin who have a variety of tastes, interest, political affiliations and religious beliefs. The second category defined as special audiences is grouped according to the type of reading materials that cater for specific topics. The third category is the specific audience who may actually be one or few people intended as target audience of written text such as letters, memos or journal.

    Similar categorization may be applied to the audiences of written text: readers. Therefore based on these categories, consulting editor or the “referee” may be identified as specific audience since they form the key readers of this genre.

    2.5 The Author-Audiences relationship in scientific Text

    In scientific text like a journal as part academic writing the role of the reader is crucial to the development of arguments made by writers. (Hunt (1995: 33) explains that “ a good piece of writing create a clear picture of an audience, a writer and a relationship between them. Therefore, possessing a general knowledge of the different types of audience.

    Myers (1989: 4) defines two Groups of who is the “real” audience of scientific articles is, he concluded it that two groups immediate community, to whom a research report is supposed to be present: Exoteric or wider scientific community, to whom a research report is supposed to be addressed, and the Esoteric or “immediate audience of individual researchers doing the same works , who in a sense “overhear”

    The second group of immediate audience are the ones, according to Myers, who “overhear” this distinction between the two groups is important, as he said :

    The distinction is important because politeness involves displaying to the exoteric group proper respect for the face of members of the esoteric group…In other hand writer of scientific article, were writes in two roles; firstly as writer whose voice is in the text, and as researcher describing the work carried out (1989: 3-4).

    Author(s) finally “meet” their audience when a piece of written work is read. Good writers/authors are those who constantly keep the image of a reader to be always present “ as necessary partner in the act of writing

    Coulthard (1994) refers to this constant image of a reader as the imagined reader. Although it is quite impossible for a writer to really know who the actual reader will be, he suggest that :

    The only strategy open to the writer is to imagine the reader and create a text for that imagined reader. Only this way can the writer decided what needed to be said and assume which parts of the argument be spelled out in detail and which parts can be passed quickly or be omitted completely. Significantly, it is the creation of the imagined reader which allows us as writers to keep the ideational within manageable limits – without a clear sense of audience, it is impossible to make right decisions about what the ideational to textualize. (1994:4)

    Coulthard also maintains that the writer may not be able to crate a single sentence without an imagined target reader. In fact, almost every sentence provides a clue about the readers in imagined target reader. Conversely, the clues provided would help readers in imagining their counterpart, the writer, when reading a text.

    Although the reader is considered to be “an inescapable element of writing” this fact remains that this is one element that is often underestimated or misunderstood by writers (Mayberry and Golden, 1990:10) Therefore, writing that begins with identifying the target audience would avoid the problem of not addressing the targeted audience.

    In general most of the scholar argues that respecting one’s readers is one of the “cornerstones” of style and is fundamentally the foundation of effective writing. Writers who have this respect for their readers would choose an appropriate organization. Level of diction and tone. These elements when combined with subject would enable writers/ authors achieve their writing purposes and eventually result in a piece of work that is able to explain, inform, challenge and even persuade the readers. The vital role receivers’ play is emphasized as: Coactive participants in the persuasion process who effectively, cognitively, and/or behaviourally respond to messages.(Ross, 1994: vii)

    Myers (1989: 4) also claim there are two different authors in scientific text, first type is the voice we take as speaking and the second type is the researcher whose work is described.

    The writer’s stance refers to the way writers position themselves rhetorically when they communicate with their audience, that is, the readers. The image they project as a writer is the result of the stance they take and is the total impression a reader gets from reading the writing, the following elements help to determine the image projected by writer:

    a) Writing Style

    b) Voice

    c) Grammar

    d) Neatness

    e) Spacing of text

    f) Visual used

    (Mayberry and Golden, 1990:7)

    The above elements are related to the language, format and supports used by writers. Apart from these elements, writers improve their character by demonstrating that they made a conscientious effort to refer to the best authorities before presenting their arguments (Rotenberg, 1991: 15-16)

    Furthermore they may identify themselves with the audience and share similar view. They would have also taken into consideration the interest and needs of others besides their own (Gong and Dragga, 1995: 404)

    In the process of writing journal such as economic, writers act as their own internal reader and Editorial board in judging the appropriate language and arguments for a particular audience. Winkler and Mc.Cuen (1994: 7) define this ability as the ”basic aim of any instruction in rhetoric” in which writers are trained to developed a sixth sense in choosing the most appropriate and effective way to address a target audience. And ideal internal reader cum editor is one who is able to tailor a written text in format that the intended audience is “willing to hear out” (winkler and McCuen, 1994:9)

    In conclusions readers or audiences play an important role in writer attempt to present a good piece of written discourse. The choice of language, the support used as well as the development of an argument rest on whom the writer is addressing the success of a persuasive argument is determined by the reader.

    2.6 Politeness In Scientific articles

    This section aims to present an overview of recent trends in the research of academic writing. One particular area of on-going research is that of the use of politeness in scientific articles such as economic issues written by economist scholars in academic journal.

    Brown and Levinson (1987) have developed a theory of politeness to explain the nature of politeness phenomena in language. According to them, it is possible to define generic types of politeness strategies to explain and predict the adoption of politeness in oral or written discourse. As we know based on the previous explanation, the theory based on the work of Goffmann (1967) and states that people who want to be polite assess the degree of ‘face’ threat that their discourse will cause in others.

    BL outline a whole hierarchy of politeness strategies and argue that cultures can be compared in terms of which categories of redress preferred. Most of the claims in the corpus of scientific articles illustrate either positive or negative politeness strategies. But there are instances that illustrate the other choices open to BL’s Model of person; doing FTA without redress, baldly; doing it off record; indirectly; and deciding not to do it at all.

    The Model Person also has a rational faculty for choosing the course of action that will give the highest pay-off with the least loss of face, evaluating three variables; the social distances (D); the relative difference in power between the speaker and hearer (P); the rank of imposition (R). These three basic variables seems still affective to help understanding the interactions of politeness between writers and readers in written text.

    Myers (1989: 3) in his articles still use the Brown and Levinson model to help understand the interaction between writers and readers in written text, and particularly in scientific texts, so it meant that these three basic variables seems affective to help the present study understanding the interactions of politeness between writers and readers in written text.

    In the realm of written communication, the influence of the above factors to politeness has been assessed (Chiappini and Harris 1996; Holtgraves and Yang 1990; Pilegaard 1997). Although it has been said that specific factors like power, social distance or status influence the adoption of strategies, it is difficult to provide definite conclusions. But it can be said that politeness in written communication such as in economic journal, like others academic field has been generally conclude as a strategy used to create and maintain a friendly atmosphere for relations, to close distance between speakers and hearers and to mitigate the impact of impositions.

    Economic journal consists of interactions among economist in which the maintenance of face is crucial. We could see economist as building alliances that define what knowledge is; the statement of the individual becomes a fact when it is accepted and used by consensus of the community in these interactions certain FTAs are unavoidable, and must be redressed with various politeness device. Every economist report in the economic issues states a claim: in other words, it makes statement that is to be taken as the article’s contribution to knowledge. Most reports, in stating a claim, deny or supersede the claims of others.

    As stated earlier this present study tries to examine the politeness strategies in the economic text, Greg Myers (1989) that investigates the use of politeness in scientific text which closely related with this study, Myers (1983: 3) justified his reasons for studying politeness strategies in scientific articles. The first reason was scientific article containing the “norms of scientific culture” which include the use of passives, nominalization, hedges, and acknowledgement, the second reason was because he considered scientific writing as the hard case. If this type of writing contained politeness strategies, then their presence in other genres can be expected, the third reason is that “every scientific reports states a claim, an FTA is performed. It would indeed be interesting to see how writers of scientific writing employ politeness strategies to stake a claim.

    Myers (1983) also discovered that politeness strategies are used explicitly in scientific articles. Below are the strategies employed by the writers/author commonly found in the scientific paper.

    2.6.1 Positive Politeness and Solidarity

    In Brown and Levinson (1987) hierarchy positive politeness are directed at showing the speaker concerns with hearer’s concern. Greg Myers in his article also illustrate:

    That in scientific writing the range possible references to the readers’ wants is severely restricted: one cannot for instance, make any remark praising the general talents of a researcher, or remind the readers of a readers past success. But there are positive politeness devices for showing the writer acceptance of the wants of rival researcher, or of the scientific community as whole. (Myers: 1989)

    He also found that strategic use of pronoun to stress solidarity as in imposition is made and the use of modifiers assuming common ground; the use of emotional response to indicate solidarity and such unscientific-seeming devices as joking and giving gifts, also the use of citation were normally used to show solidarity.

    One way of making criticism while minimizing the FTA is for the writers to use pronoun that include themselves in the criticism. Besides the use of we that means the writers, there is we that means the discipline as a whole. The use of the first person plural pronoun lessens the impact of the claim or criticism made (Myers 1998:7). When the author used we, it shows solidarity with others such as research partner(s) or supervisor(s)

    Joking would seem to be an unlikely politeness strategy in scientific text, and indeed there is not much room for humour in it. But jokes are useful for scientist, as for linguist, economist or other academic communities, in establishing a sense of shared knowledge or assumptions, and this sense can emerge in two features of scientific articles at least ; new terms and titles so they may serve to mitigate the FTA of claim,

    BL list the giving of gifts as one of their positive politeness strategies. This device that concerns us here in the analysis of writing is the gift of credit, especially in the disposition of citations. It may seem odd that the choice of who cite and who not to cite could be matter of strategy. One special case of this of giving credit is the acknowledgement of simultaneous, independent claims. Historically, priority disputes have been major causes of tension within the scientific community.

    Furthermore author can show their solidarity also with the community more subtly by exhibiting response that assumed shared and knowledge, Myers (1989) in his paper found an indication of emotional response to results, or desire for certain results.

    In scientific writing such as economic journal, a pattern of citations is used to show solidarity with the scientific community, the author used this strategy to show the referee or the editorial board that their work is an agreement with the previous studies and their work is supported by these studies, also by citing the findings of the established members of the academic community, they hoped that their suggestion would be more convincing.

    Based on the explanations above those basic concepts of the positives politeness in the scientific article is not much changed from what the basic concepts proposed by BL, that the communication is framed so that all parties maintain a positive face. “Positive politeness is an effort to make up for a threat to the desired self-image” or It usually tries to minimize the distance between them by expressing friendliness and solid interest in the hearer’s need to be respected or in generally Positive politeness devices are used to mitigate both claims and denials of claims.

    2.6.2 Negative Politeness and Hedging

    Brown and Levinsons (1987) proposed that negative politeness is the strategies assuring the readers that the writers do not intend to infringe on their wants, their freedom to act. Most of the features that are considered just conventional in scientific text-hedging, impersonal construction, the assertion of general rules, can be reinterpreted as negative politeness devices (Myers. 1989:12)

    Hedging can be described as a strategy by which speakers mitigate and soften the force of their utterances (Nikula, 1997). Hedging is politeness strategy when it marks a claim, or any other statement, is being provisional, pending acceptance in the literature, acceptance by the community in other words, acceptance by the readers.

    2.6.3 Bald on Record

    It can be said that politeness in written communication has been generally seen as a strategy used to create and maintain a friendly atmosphere for relations, to close distance between speakers and hearers and to mitigate the impact of impositions. Brown and Levinson (1987) have developed a theory of politeness to explain the nature of politeness phenomena in language.

    “S want to do the FTA with maximum efficiency more than he wants to satisfy H’s face …(BL. 1978: 95).

    In scientific articles, Myers (1998) found a parallel situation happened when the imposition on the reader is so small it can be ignored, or where the demands for efficiency are so great that they override the demands of politeness.

    Further, Myers (1989:21) conclude the choice is made when writers feel that sometimes demands for efficiency may “override the demands of politeness”. In generally that authors made the choice to baldly state their claims was with the purpose to be efficient and to state the claim clearly.

    2.6.4 Off Record

    In scientific text such as economic journal one might be not expected to find any example off “off record” strategy because is very rare, this kind of strategies is made only by implications, not in literal sense of the statement The purpose of this strategy is to record claim and an explicit statement is usually required to establish priority. But claim can be made in this indirect way only in unusual circumstances in which careful attention to the article is guaranteed, so that no implication

    If in the text of the journal we found a phrasing assuming that the writers and audiences share the same powers as an obvious implication with no need to claim priority by using a “coy” and echoic word or a word insides quotation, it can be considered as off record claim. Generally off record means that You (speaker) are removing their self from any imposition whatsoever.

    2.6.5 Avoiding the FTA

    The last option Brown and Levinson’s hierarchy of strategies is simply not to do the FTA, this is a rational choices for those FTAs for which the rank of the imposition is too great. Or the power of offended party too great, or the social distance is too great, for any politeness device mitigate the offence (Myers 1989: 25) There are many such decisions about redress or avoidance of FTAs made in any piece of writing, but in academic writing, writers need not make the decision themselves. There usually a whole series of readers, referees and editors who make comments and suggestion about what the response of readers of published text will be.

    2.7 Summary

    In this chapter, the definitions of terms that will continually appear in the rest of this thesis were explained. In addition, the various forms that politeness strategies takes were also outlined because this research will attempt to identify these forms in his own corpus.



    3.0 Introduction

    In this chapter, the reasons for the selection of the corpus, the methodology employed to answer the research questions and the instrumentation used to gather data will be explained and discussed below

    3.1. Method

    Since the present study tries to focus on the analysis of politeness strategies used in written texts, this study will employ the categories used In “politeness in scientific article” by Myers (1989) that adapted from Brown and Levinson (1987) which proposed in their book “Politeness; Some Universal in language Usage” as underlying theoretical structure. According to them, it is possible to define generic types of politeness strategies to explain and predict the adoption of politeness in oral or written discourse.

    The method of the research that the researcher applied was discourse analysis in qualitative method. The method was chosen inline with the aims of this study that is to identify, analyze and also compare how the economists of the journals from both local and international economic journals employed politeness strategies in their writing.

    3.2 Sample Size

    In this exploratory study the researcher focused on the linguistic strategies employed by the economists from both local and international economic journals on two aspects namely; the politeness strategies and the significance difference of the use of politeness strategies employed from both local and international economic journals.

    The total number of articles will be 10 articles, five (5) from each of the selected economic journals. A minimum of 50,000 words is expected from the total number of articles.

    Systematic sampling technique will be employed in which the first article of every first issue each year from 2004 to 2008 will be selected as the corpus from all the identified local and international economic journals.

    3.3 Corpus

    Corpus will consist of selected articles from local economic journals, namely, Malaysia Journal of Economic Studies published by University of Malaya/ Malaysian Economic Association and the Journal of Economic Growth by American Economic Association.

    Before deciding on which particular economic journals was to be used as the corpus for the present study, a quick observations of several libraries (chosen at random) in the three universities and internet searching area indicated that there is a wide array of economic journals users in the academia. Furthermore, this researcher also discovered the availability of a variety of economic journals that catered specifically for specific fields of economy, such as management, human resources, marketing, etc. As the focus of the present study is on politeness strategies used in two identified journals, this researcher in the beginning felt so wide area to discover.

    Since this researcher is interested in studying about the use of politeness strategies in both local and international journals, this present study narrowed its sample down to only journals published by economic associations. In the end, two recognised journals will be chosen on the recommendation by two University of Malaya’s lecturers, Associate Profesor Dr. Rohana Abd. Jani and Dr. Rodia Talib, who are presently the heads of two departments from the Faculty of Economics. They have assisted in identifying journals which are considered to be reputable and frequently used as references in the economic field.

    Both journals were well known as reputable local and international journals. From each journal, the researcher took 5 issues, so the total of issues as a corpus in this research will be 10 issues. With classification of 5 issues from a local economic journal and 5 issues taken from an international well-known journal.

    Since the area that will be studied is discourse and not pure corpus linguistic, ten issues will not be less than 50,000 words which were considered enough in showing how the economists used language in presenting their findings in polite way.

    In data collection of both journals, the researcher will apply Systematic sampling technique, in which the first article of every first issue in the latest 5 (five) years were taken as a corpus, thus, the first articles of every first issue from the year 2004 to 2008 will be selected as the corpus.

    3.4 Data Analysis

    In this research the methodology applied was the discourse analysis in qualitative method. This method was chosen in order to answer those two research questions, all the steps in analyzing the data will briefly explained below.

    Since the present study tries to focus on the analysis of politeness strategies used in written texts, the categories used by Myers (1989) adapted from Brown and Levinson (1987) proposed in their book “Politeness; Some Universal in language Usage’ as underlying theoretical structure. According to them, it is possible to define generic types of politeness strategies to explain and predict the adoption of politeness in oral or written discourse.

    The model of politeness strategies proposed by Brown and Levinson (1978, 1987) provided the framework for this research to be analyzed deeply. This model revolves around the concept of face (Goodman, 1967), which is defined as the public self-image that all competent adult members of society have and seek to claim for themselves.

    When it comes to scientific journals such as the issues in the academic journals, construction made by Myers (1989) provides large options to analyze the issues of politeness persuasion in academic journals.

    For instance, to answer the first research question in this study, the researcher will firstly review repeatedly all the issues from both sources and continually coding by applying the concept constructed by Myers (1989) namely; the positive politeness, negative politeness, bald on record, and off record

    Next, the writer will analyze and classify the models or tactics of politeness strategies into several classes, based on the content of those tactics/models that employed by the local and international authors (economists) such as the use of passives, nominalizations, hedges, acknowledgements, etc. All the politeness features will be listed under those coding classification and then counted and changed into percentages in tabulation form, so this will be clearly help seeing the politeness strategies often used by them. Then, these features (tactics) will be compared to find out which strategy(ies) is dominantly used and which tactic was used frequently.

    In research question two, the researcher will used a similar steps that applied to answer the first RQ. The data will be firstly analyzed and then classified the similarities and differences of models/tactics made by the local and international author(s) based on their strategies employed in the journals. Then all the findings which are similarities as well as differences of the politeness strategies found in the chosen economic journals will be tabulated and changed into percentages to see which economic journal dominantly in using these politeness strategies.

    [1] Myers, Greg. 1989. The Pragmatics of Politeness in Scientific Articles. Journal of Applied Linguistics, vol.10. no. 1. Oxford University Press.

    [2] The Analysis of Economic Discourse. A General Review

    [3] Face Threatening Act

    [4] Initial BL means Brown and Levinsons

    [5] It will be explain briefly on the FTA section ( FTA)

    [6] As in : “how absolutely marvellous and exquisite your roses are ,Mrs.Pete”

    [7] Esoteric audience

    [8] about success of request, etc

    [9] Just as positive-politeness realization are forms for minimizing social distance

    Did you like this example?

    Cite this page

    Linguistic politeness. (2017, Jun 26). Retrieved November 26, 2022 , from

    Save time with Studydriver!

    Get in touch with our top writers for a non-plagiarized essays written to satisfy your needs

    Get custom essay

    Stuck on ideas? Struggling with a concept?

    A professional writer will make a clear, mistake-free paper for you!

    Get help with your assigment
    Leave your email and we will send a sample to you.
    Stop wasting your time searching for samples!
    You can find a skilled professional who can write any paper for you.
    Get unique paper

    I'm Chatbot Amy :)

    I can help you save hours on your homework. Let's start by finding a writer.

    Find Writer