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Euphemism in English and Japanese : a pragmatic contrastive study


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Hasegawa, H 2005 , 'Euphemism in English and Japanese : a pragmatic contrastive study', PhD thesis, University of Tasmania.

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This study investigated euphemistic forms and functions of English and Japanese by
using contrastive analysis as well as considering the views on euphemism of
Japanese English-language speakers and Australian Japanese-language speakers.
In order to achieve these goals, four Research Objectives (RO) were addressed. RO1
aimed to identify the functions of euphemistic expressions in terms of
communication. R02 aimed to investigate the characteristic features of contexts in
which native and non-native speakers of the target languages (English and Japanese)
encounter positive and negative aspects of euphemism. The purpose of RO3 was to
examine the target group's (native and non-native speakers of the target language)
conceptualisations of and attitudes towards euphemism and its role in different social
contexts. R04 investigated how euphemistic expressions are handled by Japanese
people learning English as a second/foreign language and Australians learning
Japanese as a second/foreign language, when faced with sociolinguistic difficulties.
ROI was addressed by an extensive literature review. A combination of quantitative
and qualitative studies was used to investigate R02, R03 and R04. The quantitative
method, which was questionnaire based, targeted 272 students from universities in
Japan and 176 students from universities in Australia. This addressed parts of R02
and R03. The qualitative method, which involved interviews with eight Australians
and Japanese (who were in the target country when the interviews were conducted)
was utilised for R02, RO3 and R04.
The results of the investigations showed the language learners' communication
difficulties caused by euphemistic, dysphemistic and doublespeak locutions in the
target language. The results also indicated clearly the relevance of these three
entities, which can be utilised interchangeably according to the speaker's purposes,
the different desirable semantic outcomes and the inclusion of intermingled elements
of communication settings. The outcomes of the research provide a valuable means
of establishing an understanding of how and why euphemisms are currently exploited
in both Japanese and English; this is an area that has only been touched upon in
previous educational research. The study concluded that promoting the contexts in which euphemism, dysphemism
and doublespeak are used in social settings will potentially enhance the effective
second/foreign language education. The framework of the analysis presented, along
with the research outcomes, facilitated the researcher's development of some sample
lesson plans which could be used to improve communicative strategies, especially
for Australians learning the Japanese language and Japanese learning English.

Item Type: Thesis - PhD
Authors/Creators:Hasegawa, H
Keywords: Japanese language, English language, Contrastive linguistics
Copyright Holders: The Author
Copyright Information:

Copyright 2005 the Author - The University is continuing to endeavour to trace the copyright owner(s) and in the meantime this item has been reproduced here in good faith. We would be pleased to hear from the copyright owner(s).

Additional Information:

Available for library use only and limited copying in accordance with the Copyright Act 1968. Thesis (PhD.)--University of Tasmania, 2005. Includes bibliographical references

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