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I am indebted to many beloved people for their providing me incentive and
support during the time that I was writing this graduation paper. Firstly, I would
like to express my sincere gratitude to my supervisor, Mr. Trinh Van Sach (M.A)
at the Foreign Language Department of Hai Phong Private University for his
various materials, constant support, advice and valuable comments on draft
chapters to complete this study.
I also offer my sincere thanks to Ms. Tran Thi Ngoc Lien, Dean of Foreign
Language for her help and instructions.

nguyenthutrang_na903

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1
HAIPHONG PRIVATE UNIVERSITY
DEPARTMENT OF FOREIGN LANGUAGE
GRADUATION PAPER
SUGGESTING AND RESPONDING TO SUGGESTIONS IN ENGLISH
AND VIETNAMESE
By:
Nguyen Thu Trang
Class:
Na903
Supervisor:
Trinh Van Sach, M.A
HAIPHONG – JUNE 2009
2
CỘNG HOÀ XÃ HỘI CHỦ NGHĨA VIỆT NAM
Độc lập – Tự do – Hạnh phúc
—————o0o————–
BỘ GIÁO DỤC VÀ ĐÀO TẠO
TRƯỜNG ĐẠI HỌC DÂN LẬP HẢI PHÒNG
NHIỆM VỤ ĐỀ TÀI TỐT NGHIỆP
Sinh viên: Nguyễn Thu Trang ..Mã số: 091162
Lớp: Na 903…Ngành: Ngoại ngữ
Tên đề tài: Suggesting and responding to suggestions in English and Vietnamese.
3
NHIỆM VỤ ĐỀ TÀI TỐT NGHIỆP
1. Nội dung và các yêu cầu cần giải quyết trong nhiệm vụ đề tài tốt nghiệp (về
lý luận, thực tiễn, các số liệu cần tính toán và bản vẽ)
2. Các số liệu cần thiết để thiết kế tính toán
3. Địa điểm thực tập
4
CÁN BỘ HƯỚNG DẪN ĐỀ TÀI TỐT NGHIỆP
Người hướng dẫn thứ nhất:
Họ và tên: Trịnh Văn Sách
Học hàm, học vị: Thạc sĩ
Cơ quan công tác: Đại học dân lập Hải Phòng
Nội dung hướng dẫn: Suggesting and responding to suggestions in English and
Vietnamese.
Người dướng dẫn thứ hai
Họ và tên:
Học hàm, học vị:
Cơ quan công tác
Nội dung hướng dẫn:
Đề tài tốt nghiệp được giao ngày:..tháng.năm 2009
Yêu cầu phải hoàn thành trước ngày:..tháng.năm 2009
Đã nhận nhiệm vụ Đ.T.T.N Đã giao nhiệm vụ: Đ.T.T.N
Sinh viên Cán bộ hướng dẫn Đ.T.T.N
Hải Phòng, ngày tháng.năm2009
HIỆU TRƯỞNG
5
PHẦN NHẬN XÉT TÓM TẮT CỦA CÁN BỘ HƯỚNG DẪN
1. Tinh thần thái độ của sinh viên trong quá trình làm đề tài tốt nghiệp
2. Đánh giá chất lượng Đ.T.T.N ( So vớI nộI dung yêu cầu đã đề ra trong nhiệm
vụ Đ.T.T.N trên các mặt ly luận, thực tiễn , tính toàn giá trị sử dụng, chất lượng các
bản vẽ)
3. Cho điểm của cán bộ hướng dẫn:
Hải Phòng, ngày .tháng.năm 2009
Cán bộ hướng dẫn chính
(Họ tên và chữ kí)
6
NHẬN XÉT ĐÁNH GIÁ CỦA CÁN BỘ CHẤM PHẢN BIỆN ĐỀ TÀI TỐT
NGHIỆP
1. Đánh giá chất lượng đề tài tốt nghiệp về các mặt thu nhập và phân tích số liệu
ban đầu, cơ sở lý luận chọn phương án tối ưu, cách tính toán chất lượng thuyết
minh và bản vẽ, giá trị lý luận và thực tiễn để tài.
2. Cho điểm của cán bộ phản biện
(Điểm ghi bằng số và chữ)
Ngày.tháng.năm 2009
Người chấm phản biện
7
ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS
I am indebted to many beloved people for their providing me incentive and
support during the time that I was writing this graduation paper. Firstly, I would
like to express my sincere gratitude to my supervisor, Mr. Trinh Van Sach (M.A)
at the Foreign Language Department of Hai Phong Private University for his
various materials, constant support, advice and valuable comments on draft
chapters to complete this study.
I also offer my sincere thanks to Ms. Tran Thi Ngoc Lien, Dean of Foreign
Language for her help and instructions.
Finally yet importantly, my wholehearted thanks are presented to my
family and all of my friends for their constant support and encouragement in the
process of doing this research paper.
Hai Phong, June, 2009.
Nguyen Thu Trang
8
TABLE OF CONTENTS
ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS
TABLE OF CONTENT
PART I: INTRODUCTION3
1. Rationable…3
2. Aims of the study3
3. Scope of the study…4
4. Methods of the study..4
5. Design of the study.4
PART II: DEVELOPMENT…6
Chapter 1: THEORETICAL BACKGROUND6
I. Language and communication.6
1. Language..6
1.1 What is language? .6
1.2 Language in society6
2. Communication…7
2.1 What is communication.7
2.2 Function of communication…7
2.3 Types of communication9
II. Speech acts.10
1. Definition…10
2. Levels of speech acts..11
3. Communicative and coventional speech acts.13
4. Types of speech acts..14
5. Direct, indirect and nonliteral speech acts. …16
6. Philosophical importance of speech act theory..21
III. Politeness..22
1. Definition…22
2. Strategies of Politeness..23
9
Chapter II: SUGGESTING AND RESPONDING TO SUGGESTION…28
I. Suggesting and responding to suggestions in English. ..28
1. Making suggestions in English.28
Direct suggestions29
Indirect suggestions.32
2. Responding to suggestions in English…33
Acceptance…33
2.1.1. Definition of acceptance to suggestions33
2.1.2. Types of acceptance to suggestions..33
2.2. Rejection.36
2.2.1. Definition of rejection to suggestions..37
2.2.2. Types of rejections.. 37
2.2.3 Models of rejecting sentences to suggestions..39
II. Suggesting and responding to suggestions in Vietnamese.40
1. Making suggestions in Vietnamese.40
1.1. Direct suggestions.40
1.2. Indirect suggestions..41
2. Responding to suggestions in Vietnamese41
2.1. Acceptance..41
2.2. Rejection44
III. The similaries and differences between English and Vietnamese in
suggesting and responding to suggestions
1. Suggestions…47
2. Responses.47
2.1. Acceptance.47
2.2. Rejection48
Chapter III: FINDINGS.49
PART III: CONCLUSION50
I. Summary of the study..50
II. Suggestions for further research..50
ATTACHMENT52
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PART I : INTRODUCTION
1. Rationale:
English is one of the most widely used languages worldwide when being used
by over 60% the world population. It‟s used internationally in business, political,
cultural relation and education as well. Thanks to widespread use of English, diffirent
country come close to each other to work out the problems and strive for a prosperous
community.
Suggestion and response are also the part of communication.
Discussing about the suggestion and response in communicating, Wall [12:126]
says: “Most of our living includes suggesting and responding to suggestions”. People
have many reasons and chance to give suggestion.
Being a student of Foreign Language Faculty with four years learning at the
university, I have chance to equip myself with the knowledge of many fields in society
such as: sociology, economy, finance, culture, etc With the knowledge gained from
the professional teachers, specialized books, references and with the helf of my
friends, the experience gained at the trainning time, I have put my mind on theme:
“Suggesting and responding to suggestions in English and Vietnamese” for my
graduation paper.
2. Aims of the study:
For the above-mentioned reasons this paper mainly focus on studying the
suggesting and responding to suggestion especially the ways of using and
understanding this phenomenon properly. Follow in this trend, the study will serve
purposes:
To present the usage of suggestions and responding to suggestions in English
and Vietnamese.
To help people understand about the similaries and differences between English
and Vietnamese in making suggestions and giving responses.
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To provide some expressions on suggesting and responding to suggestions in
English and Vietnamese.
3. Scope of the study
In English, there are a lots of interesting aspects of communication to study.
However, suggesting and responding to suggestions is often used in our daily
conversations, that‟s why, it‟s the most fantastic field I have decided to study for my
graduation paper.
Due to the limitation of time and knowledge of the study field, my study
introduces and gives discussion as much as possible about definition, classification
and usage of suggestions and responses. Besides, in the second part of this paper I also
discuss politeness and speech acts as the theoretical background for my study of
suggestions and responses.
4. Methods of the study
In order to get data for the study and analysis in my paper, three ways are
deployed and used for data collection. First, data are collected from specific
suggsestions and responses presented in the materials and textbooks used for teaching
and learning English, English for special purposes in Vietnamsese Universities and
colleges. Second, they are obtained from discussions with my supervisor, from internet
and other sources. Third, through my own observation and informal dicussions with
foreigners. Then the data will be analyzed and arranged for dicussion according to the
set aims.
5. Design of the study
The study is divided into three main parts of which the second one is the most
important part.
 Part one is introduction that gives out the rationale for choosing the topic of this
study, the aims, scope as well as methods of the study.
 Part two is develpoment that consists of three chapters:
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The first chapter aims at providing theoretical background for the study,
which is mainly brief introduction of language, communication,
politeness and speech acts.
The second chapter studies suggesting and responding to suggestions”.
This is the most important part in my graduation paper.
The third chapter refers to some findings and implication of the study.
 Part three is the conclusion of the study, in which all the issues mentioned in
previous parts of the study are summarized.
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PART II: DEVELOPMENT
Chapter I: Theoretical Background
I. Language and communication
1. Language
What is language?
Language is used to communicate and convey meaning from one person to
another. Language has rules which involve word structure (morphology), grammar
and sentence structure (syntax), word meaning (semantics) and social appropriateness
(pragmatics).
Some linguists who focus on these aspects of language spend years in the field
investigating previously unstudied languages, many of which are now on the verge of
extinction. By studying the properties of languages from around the world, linguists
hope to better understand properties shared by all human languages and the ways in
which languages can differ. That is, their goal is to understand the nature of human
language – how language “works.”
1.2 Language in society
Language use is an inherently social phenomenon. How you speak depends on
such factors as where you grew up, your racial and ethnic identity, whether you are a
woman or man, and your education. That is, you use the variation in language as a
creative means of expressing who you are (and who you are not). By studying this
variation, researchers enhance their understanding of language as well as their
understanding of social processes, and discover the social factors that influence our
linguistic choices and how these choices are perceived by others. Linguists who study
the social aspects of language also investigate such topics as how and why languages
change over time, how new languages are created when speakers of divergent
languages come into contact, how language attitudes are used to maintain forms of
discrimination, how conversations are social transactions, the relation between
language and power, and the use of language in the media.
14
(
2. Communication
2.1 What is communication?
Communication is the process of transferring information from one source to
another. Communication is commonly defined as “the imparting or interchange of
thoughts, opinions, or information by speech, writing, or signs”.
Communication can
be perceived as a two-way process in which there is an exchange and progression of
thoughts, feelings, or ideas towards a mutually accepted
goal or direction
Communication as an academic discipline has a long history.
Communication is a process where by information is encoded and imparted by a
sender to a receiver via a channel/medium. The receiver then decodes the message and
gives the sender a feedback. Communication requires that all parties have an area of
communicative commonality. There are auditory means, such as speaking, singing and
sometimes tone of voice, and nonverbal, physical means, such as body language, sign
language, paralanguage, touch, eye contact, by using writing.
Communication is thus a process by which we assign and convey meaning in an
attempt to create shared understanding. This process requires a vast repertoire of skills
in intrapersonal and interpersonal processing, listening, observing, speaking,
questioning, analyzing, and evaluating. If you use these processes it is developmental
and transfers to all areas of life: home, school, community, work, and beyond. It is
through communication that collaboration and cooperation occur.
2.2 Function of communication
“Treat a man as he is and he will remain as he is. Treat a man as he can and
should be and he will become as he can and should be.” ~ Goethe
Communication satisfies most of our needs: physical, identity and social
Physical
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◊ People who lack strong relationships have 2 – 3 times the risk of early death,
regardless of whether or not they smoke or drink.
◊ Terminal cancer strikes socially isolated people more often than those who have
close personal relationships.
◊ Divorced, separated, and widowed people are 5 – 10 times more likely to need
hospitalization for mental problems than their married counterparts.
◊ Pregnant women under stress and without supportive relationships have three times
more complications than pregnant women who suffer from the same amount of stress
but have strong social support.
◊ Studies show that social isolation is a major risk factor contributing to coronary
disease, comparable to physiological factors such a s diet, smoking, obesity an lack of
physical activity socially isolated people are four times more susceptible to the
common cold than those who have active social networks.
Identity
Communication helps humans to define who they are. In other words, it is how
we communicate with others that helps us formulate the parameters of our identity.
When you speak are you honest or always sarcastic? Do you acknowledge others when
you speak or diss them by walking out when you don’t like the way a conversation is
going? Consider the famous feral children who grew without human contact and the
following excerpt taken from Understanding Human Communication.
Some scholars have argued that we are most attracted to people who confirm our
identity. This confirmation can come in different forms, depending on the self-image
of the communicator. People with relatively high self-esteem seek out others who
confirm their value and, […] avoid those who treat them poorly. Conversely,people
who regard themselves as unworthy may look for relatiohships in which others treat
them badly. This principle offers one explanation for why some people maintain
damaging or unsuccessful relationships.
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Social Needs
Researchers have identified several social needs that are statisfied through
communication: affection, inclusion, escape, relaxation and control. These are needs
that must be filled, and only communication with others can satisfy that need.
Anthropologist Walter Godldschmidt terms the communication drive as the “human
career.”
Besides, communiation has other fuctions like: give personal information; ask
for personal information; introduce family and close friends; tell the time/day, etc; ask
the time/day; express ability enquire about ability; say when you do not understand;
ask for clarification; check back; correct; spell words aloud; describe places and
things; give information, as part of a simple explanation; give single-step directions
and instructions; make requests – ask for directions; enquire about prices and
quantities; make requests – ask for something; make requests – ask someone to do
something; respond to a request; express likes and dislikes; express feelings; express
wishes; express views; agree and disagree; apologise; express a preference; express
thanks; greet; respond to greetings; describe health and symptoms; invite and offer;
accept; decline; take leave.
2.3 Types of communication
Every time we speak, we choose and use one of four basic communication styles:
assertive, aggressive, passive and passive-aggressive.
a. Assertive Communication
The most effective and healthiest form of communication is the assertive style. It‟s
how we naturally express ourselves when our self-esteem is intact, giving us the
confidence to communicate without games and manipulation.
When we are being assertive, we work hard to create mutually satisfying solutions. We
communicate our needs clearly and forthrightly. We care about the relationship and
strive for a win/win situation. We know our limits and refuse to be pushed beyond
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them just because someone else wants or needs something from us. Surprisingly,
assertive is the style most people use least.
b. Aggressive Communication
Aggressive communication always involves manipulation. We may attempt to make
people do what we want by inducing guilt (hurt) or by using intimidation and control
tactics (anger). Covert or overt, we simply want our needs met – and right now!
Although there are a few arenas where aggressive behavior is called for (i.e., sports or
war), it will never work in a relationship. Ironically, the more aggressive sports rely
heavily on team members and rational coaching strategies.
c. Passive Communication
Passive communication is based on compliance and hopes toavoidconfrontation at all
costs. In this mode we don‟t talk much, question even less, and actually do very little.
We just don‟t want to rock the boat. Passives have learned that it is safer not to react
and better to disappear than to stand up and be noticed.
d. Passive-Aggressive Communication
A combination of styles, passive-aggressive avoids direct confrontation (passive), but
attempts to get even through manipulation (aggressive). If you‟ve ever thought about
making that certain someone who needs to be “taught a thing or two” suffer (even just
a teeny bit), you‟ve stepped pretty close to (if not on into) the devious and sneaky
world of the passive-aggressive.
II. Speech acts
1. Definition:
Speech acts are a staple of everyday communicative life, but only became a
topic of sustained investigation, at least in the English speaking world, in the middle of
the twentieth Century. Since that time, “speech act theory” has been influential not
only within philosophy, but also in linguistics, psychology, legal theory, artificial
intelligence literary theory and many other scholarly disciplines. Recognition of the
importance of speech acts has illuminated the ability of language to do other things
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than describe reality. In the process the boundaries among the philosophy of language,
the philosophy of action, the philosophy of mind and even ethics have become less
sharp.
We perform speech acts when we offer an apology, greeting, request,
complaint, invitation, compliment, or refusal. A speech act is an utterance that serves a
function in communication. A speech act might contain just one word, as in “Sorry” to
perform an apology or several words or sentence “I‟m sorry I for got your birthday. I
just let it slip my mind. Speech acts include real-life interactions and require not only
knowledge of the language but also appropriate use of that language within a given
culture.
Here are some examples of speech acts we use everyday.
Greeting: “Hi, Eric. How are things going?”
Request: “Could you pass me the mashed potatoes, please?”
Complaint: “I’ve already been waiting three weeks for the computer, and I was told it
would be delivered within a week.”
Invitation: “We’re having some people over Saturday evening and wanted to know if
you’d like to join us.”
Compliment: “Hey, I really like your tie.”
Refusal: “Oh, I’d love to see that movie with you but this Friday just isn’t going to
work.”
2. Levels of speech acts
Austin identifies three distinct levels of action beyond the act of utterance itself.
He distinguished the act of saying something, what one does in saying it, and what one
do

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