Face-threatening speech acts such as refusals present particular problems for all human beings. These problems are exacerbated when individuals are not familiar with the culture in which these speech acts must be performed and do not have the communicative or linguistic facility to fully express their meanings. This book takes an in-depth look at the speech act of refusals as performed in English by native speakers of Japanese. The data-base comes from video-taped exchanges between native speakers of English and native speakers of Japanese during which the Japanese non-native speaker attempts a refusal. The analysis of these sequences approaches the issues from multiple research perspectives, most notably, second language acquisition and pragmatic speech acts. This book looks at interactional aspects of refusal sequences including the non-native speaker's evolving moves, responsive behaviors, and use of non-verbal resources. The focus is on how non-native speakers deal with the pragmalinguistic and interactional problems inherent in performing a face-threatening act and the kind of feedback that they receive in the course of the interaction.
This book is of interest for those involved in general linguistics, pragmatics, discourse analysis, and applied linguistics.