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Performing acts of impoliteness through code-switching to English in colloquial Jordanian Arabic interactions

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This article investigates how English is exploited in naturally occurring interactions in colloquial Jordanian Arabic to perform acts of impoliteness, drawing on impoliteness model by Culpeper (1996), its subsequent modifications in Culpeper et al. (2003) and Culpeper (2005), and its alignment with Spencer-Oatey’s (2002) concept of rapport-management. Attack on face, specifically Quality Face, Social Identity Face, and Association Rights, through code-switching to English were identified in the data. Positive impoliteness and negative impoliteness strategies were employed through using English, sometimes in conjunction with Arabic impoliteness resources. Furthermore, English was used as an indirect impoliteness strategy to do off-record impoliteness to convey impolite beliefs about a third party or a particular state of affairs. These acts of impoliteness were mainly countered defensively by ignoring the attack or offensively through countering the implied face attack with face attack.
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Keywords: English; Jordanian Arabic; Politeness; code-switching; discursive approach; face; face attack; impoliteness

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: January 19, 2018

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