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//CAN i help you //: The use of

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Abstract:


This paper examines the use of two tones by speakers across a variety of discourse types in the Hong Kong Corpus of Spoken English (HKCSE). Specifically, it focuses on the use of the rise and rise-fall tones by speakers to assert dominance and control in different discourse types. Brazil (1997) argues that the use of the rise and the rise-fall tones is a means of exerting dominance and control at certain points in the discourse and that while conversational participants have the option to freely exchange this role throughout the discourse, in other kinds of discourse such behaviour would be seen to be usurping the role of the designated dominant speaker. The findings suggest that the choice of certain tones is determined by both the discourse type and the designated roles of the speakers, but is not confined to the native speakers or determined by gender.

Keywords: Hong Kong Chinese; academic supervisions; business discourses; conversations; discourse intonation; native English speakers; speaker dominance

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: https://doi.org/10.1075/ijcl.10.1.05che

Affiliations: The Hong Kong Polytechnic University

Publication date: 2005-01-01

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