Differeces Between Vietnamese and American Compliment

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vinh university
foreign language department
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A CROSS-CULTURAL STUDY OF GIVING COMPLIMENTS and responses IN ENGLISH AND VIETNAMESE

(nghiên cỨU GIAO THOA VĂN HÓA VỀ CÁCH KHEN VÀ ĐÁP LẠI LỜI KHEN TRONG TIẾNG aNH VÀ TIẾNG VIỆT )

graduation paper

fIELD: lINGUISTICS

Student: TRUONG THI THANH CANH, 47A1 Supervisor: BUI THI THANH MAI (M.A)

Vinh - 2010

Acknowledgement

I would first like specially to thank Mrs. Bui Thi Thanh Mai (M.A), my supervisor, for her whole – hearted help and invaluable advice. Without her guidance, my thesis is far from completed. I would also like to thank Mrs. Tran Ngoc Yen (M.A) for her kindly support. She encourages me to have self- confidence to do this research. I want to acknowledge the help of Miss Sofia for her advice when I conduct the list of questionnaire. She provides important information that the author uses to have a suitable survey questions. My gratitude goes to Mr. Tinh (M.A) who teaches at ASEM Vietnam center for his essential materials and advice. Last but not least, I give a very special thanks to my family and classmates, who always stand by me, provide their emotional support through out the process I do this paper.

ABSTRACT

Many people who communicate cross-cultural boundaries have experienced communication breakdowns with people from different first language backgrounds. It also happens to any one who wants to give compliment on a person from another country. The main purpose of this thesis is to raise the aware of culture gap. It is done, focused on the comparison of the ways of giving compliment and responding to compliments between the English and the Vietnamese. Using the authenticable data from survey, which is conducted with 30 native speakers in each culture, this research is carried out with three sub-aims: (1) to find out similarities and differences between two cultures in the way they perform speech act of compliment; (2) to investigate the culture factors that have influence on the word choice of interlocutors; (3) to enrich the knowledge of second language learners about the importance of culture factor in leaning target language. The result also illustrates the fact that people in two cultures are very friendly. They tend to give compliments a lot. However, what they compliment on, how they give and respond to, it differs. How detailed the information is it? The readers will find the answers in the next chapters of the thesis.

TABLE OF CONTENTS

Acknowledgementi
Abstractii
Abbreviationsiii
Part A: Introduction
1. Rationale 1
2. Aims of the study3
3. Scope of the study3
4. Methods of the study4
5. Data collecting procedure5
6. Design of the study5
Part B: Development
Chapter I: Theoretical Background
1. What is Pragmatics?6
1. What is Speech acts.6
2. Compliment as a speech act.11
1.2. Cultural communication.13
1.2.1. Notion of culture13
1.2.1.1. Cross-cultural communication.14
1.3 Positive – negative politeness.14
Chapter II: A cross-cultural study of giving and responding to compliments in English and Vietnamese equivalents 2.1 .Topics of compliment.17
2.1.1 .Topics of compliment in English20
2.1.1.1 Appearance20
2.1.1.2. Skill or talents21
2.1.1.3 Work accomplished.22
2.1.1.4 Possession22
2.1.2 Topics of compliment in Vietnam.23
2.1.2.1 Appearance23
2.1.2.2 Skill or talents25
2.1.2.3 Work accomplished.26
2.1.2.4 Possession27
2.1.3. A contrasive analysis27
2.1.3.1 Major similarities27
2.1.3.2. Major differences28
2.2. Giving compliment strategies30
2.3: Compliment response strategies in English and Vietnamese equivalents.32 2.3.2. English findings
2.3.1. Vietnamese findings
2.3.3. A...
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