EUROSLA Yearbook: Volume 2 (2002)
  • ISSN 1568-1491
  • E-ISSN: 1569-9749
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This paper addresses the linguistic realization of the face-threatening act of ‘complaints’ in native and non-native French discourse. Data were obtained through written Discourse Completion Tasks with German learners of French and native speakers to examine the extent to which L1 complaint strategies differ from L2 ones, the extent to which differences can be attributed to transfer from the L1, and the extent to which complaint behaviour is gender specific. While no direct evidence of pragmatic transfer from the L1 was found, significant differences were found between L1 and L2 in utterance lengths, degree of directness, use of supportive moves, and appearance of downgraders. Some gender specific features were also found.


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  • Article Type: Research Article
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