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Pragmalinguistic Features of KFL Learners in the Speech Act of Request

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The purpose of this investigation is to identify and describe the interlanguage features of American KFL (Korean as a Foreign Language) learners with regard to the communicative act of request. For this study, 50 female KFL learners wereasked to write in Korean what they normally say when they carry out the speech act of request, in twelve different situations. Their Korean responses were compared to those of 50 female native speakers in order to identify deviations and problems, which the American KFL learners wereconfronted with when they try to acquire this particular communicative feature. The study identifies and discusses the pragmalinguistic shortcomings of the KFL learners, comparing the type and frequency of downgraders and the honorifics used by the KFL learners and by the Korean native speakers. The pragmalinguistic differences of the respective groups support the findings by Sohn ( 1986) that Koreans are more hierarchical and collectivistic than Americans, whereas Americans tend to be more egalitarian and individualisticthan Koreans.

Document Type: Research Article


Publication date: January 1, 2002


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