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Vocatives in service encounters: evidence from Greek

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The aim of the study is to investigate the use of vocatives in face-to-face interactions in Greek shops. In particular, we concentrate on the types of vocatives attested, their position and function within the exchange, and their association with politeness. The analysis of an extensive corpus of service encounters (SEs) reveals that vocatives are not particularly common in such contexts and that they are mostly used to index familiarity. Such use of vocatives as positive politeness strategies is compatible not only with Greek speakers’ orientation toward positive politeness, but also with the importance attached to the establishment of rapport and familiarity during SEs as a means of enhancing service quality and customer satisfaction.
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Keywords: Address terms; positive politeness; service encounters; vocatives

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Department of Early Childhood Education, National and Kapodistrian University of Athens, Athens, Greece 2: Department of English Language and Literature, National and Kapodistrian University of Athens, Athens, Greece

Publication date: January 2, 2019

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