The Impact of Gender in Determining Politeness Strategy with Reference to Iraqi Students of English

Abstract

The current study aims at investigating the impact of gender on the linguistic politeness especially acts threatening the interlocutor's face (FTAs) such as requests, offers, orders …etc. It is intended to answer some questions concerning the very nature of politeness as a linguistic phenomenon and as a cultural specific concept. Moreover, it investigates which strategies are attributed to be feminine and which are attributed to be masculine. The most thorough treatment of politeness was made by the scholars Brown& Levinson (1987, (1978)), and Leech (1983) though they were not the first in this field. Their efforts seemed to be conducted to establish the universal norms of politeness and the related items affecting them. In this concern , showing the linguistic politeness probably depends on these interrelated factors ; the type of the act that the language user might make , the type of relation involving the participants in a given situation i.e. whom one is addressing to see whether the relationship is intimate , formal , informal ...etc , gender and the cultural norms of a certain language . This paper depends on Brown & Levinson's perspective of the linguistic politeness. Data were gathered by analyzing the students responses on a written test composed of two questions. Politeness was rated by counting the correct choices performed by male and female participants for each item of the given questions.