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The Language of Service Encounters
A Pragmatic-Discursive Approach

$31.99 (C)

  • Date Published: May 2019
  • availability: Available
  • format: Paperback
  • isbn: 9781108718752

$ 31.99 (C)

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About the Authors
  • Service encounters are ubiquitous in social interaction. We buy food and everyday items in supermarkets, convenience stores, or markets; we purchase merchandise in department stores; or we request information at a visitor information center. This book offers a comprehensive account of service encounters in commercial and non-commercial settings. Grounded in naturally occurring face-to-face interactions and drawing on a pragmatic-discursive approach, J. César Félix-Brasdefer sets out a framework for the analysis of transactional and relational talk in various contexts in the United States and Mexico. This book investigates cross-cultural and intra-lingual pragmatic variation during the negotiation of service. The author provides a broad review of research on service encounters to date, and analyzes characteristics of sales transactions, such as participants' roles, pragmatic and discourse functions of relational talk and address forms, the realization of politeness, and changes in alignment from transactional to relational talk.

    • Examines face-to-face interactions in commercial and non-commercial service encounter settings, including the analysis of transactional and non-transactional talk
    • Analyzes pragmatic and sociolinguistic variation, including linguistic, regional, intra-lingual, and gender variation
    • Reviews and evaluates methods and techniques for the collection and analysis of corpus data in service encounters in naturalistic settings
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    Reviews & endorsements

    ‘Félix-Brasdefer provides an in-depth, multi-layered account of the sociolinguistic and pragmatic dimensions of service encounters in the US and Mexico. Detailed analysis of both Spanish and English data offers readers fascinating insights into cross-cultural variation.' Camilla Vásquez, University of South Florida

    'Trailblazing the pragmatic-discursive approach, this fine book illuminates service encounters in both Mexico and the United States in all their multimodal richness. A must-read for anybody interested in cross-cultural/variational pragmatics.' Jonathan Culpeper, Lancaster University

    'The author advances the field of discourse pragmatics by offering an unusually broad integrative approach to social interaction and applying it to a wide range of service encounters. This is an innovative model for a multifaceted analysis of any type of spoken discourse.' Klaus P. Schneider, Rheinische Friedrich-Wilhelms-Universität Bonn

    'Félix-Brasdefer’s comprehensive book on the language of service encounters brings fresh air into the field with its unique perspective, rich data, insightful observations and illuminating discussions.' Istvan Kecskes, State University of New York, Albany

    'Based on the assumption that language in [Service Encounters] SEs is closely related to sociocultural and cognitive contexts, Félix-Brasdefer proposes an insightful pragmatic-discursive approach, in which an SE is considered as a joint activity realized by a series of joint actions.' Xinzhang Yang, Discourse Studies

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    Product details

    • Date Published: May 2019
    • format: Paperback
    • isbn: 9781108718752
    • dimensions: 229 x 152 x 16 mm
    • weight: 0.4kg
    • contains: 19 b/w illus. 14 tables
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    1. Approaches to service encounters: a pragmatic-discursive analysis of social action
    2. Service encounters in commercial and non-commercial settings
    3. Cross-cultural service encounters: negotiating service in the United States and Mexico
    4. Intra-lingual pragmatic variation in service encounters
    5. Negotiating service in Mexican markets
    6. Intra-cultural service encounters at a US visitor information center
    7. Relational talk and the negotiation of face in service encounters
    8. Forms of address and politeness in service encounters
    9. Conclusions.

  • Author

    J. César Félix-Brasdefer, Indiana University
    J. César Félix-Brasdefer is Associate Professor of Spanish Linguistics in the Department of Spanish and Portuguese at Indiana University, Bloomington. His recent publications include Politeness in Mexico and the United States (2008) and Pragmatic Variation in First and Second Language Contexts (edited with Dale Koike, 2012).

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