中、美文化中，受測者使用其他之拒絕語言行為之用意均為滿足面子語言行為(Face-Satisfying Acts)。英文系學生使用間接拒絕語言行為較為頻繁且呈現較高的母語語用移轉 (L1 pragmatic transfer)。大學英語教師較能運用中、美國文化獨特的語言習性及技巧來表達。涵化(acculturation) 則影響有外國經驗的受測者。跨文化效力似與語言程度和跨文化經驗正相關。本文除說明研究受限制之外並提出本研究之發現在英語教學上之應用與建議。 This study is a comparative study of refusal speech acts in Chinese and American cultures. The aim is to reveal cross-cultural universalities and variations of refusal speech acts in respect to the effects of social and contextual factors. It also explores the impact of cross-cultural awareness on refusal speech acts by means of both quantitative and qualitative analyses.
Participants were 40 native English speakers from California, USA, and 120 Chinese English speakers in northern Taiwan, whose English was a Foreign Language—40 English majors, 40 non-English majors, and 40 college English teachers—with varied cross-cultural experience. To elicit the use of refusal speech acts and the reflections of cross-cultural awareness, three instruments—the Discourse Completion Tasks (DCT), the Cross-Cultural Adaptability Inventory (CCAI), and the background information and cross-cultural experience questionnaire—were adopted. Interviews were conducted to offer in-depth information for variations of refusal speech acts.
Results suggest that the dominance of indirect refusal speech acts was a cross-cultural universality and especially favorable in requests. Cross-cultural variations were indicated in direct and other refusal speech acts. The different use of direct refusals was tied to the convention of the native culture. The choice of other refusal speech acts was relevant to social variables and the native culture, as it was cultural-specific. Other refusal speech acts typically functioned as Face-Satisfying Acts in both Chinese and American cultures. English majors were more indirect in refusals and higher in L1 pragmatic transfer than non-English majors. College English teachers were flexible in using language features from both Chinese and American cultures. The effect of acculturation on refusal speech acts was revealed for those with overseas experience. Cross-cultural effectiveness seemed to positively correlate to language proficiency and cross-cultural experience. Pedagogical implications and research limitations are also addressed.