Arab World English Journal (AWEJ) Proceedings of  KUST, Iraq Conference  2022                           Pp.44-58

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Impoliteness Formulas, Triggers, and Purposes to Refusal as Employed by Iraqi
English Learners

Tabarek Ali Qassim
Department of English, College of Education for Women,
University of Baghdad, Baghdad, Iraq
Corresponding Author:

Nawal Fadhel Abbas
Department of English, College of Education for Women,
University of Baghdad, Baghdad, Iraq


 Recived: 2/8/2022                     Accepted: 5/13/2022                     Published:  7/1/2022


The present study aims at scrutinizing the impoliteness types, causes, and purposes utilized by Iraqi English language learners when refusing marriage proposals. Thus, it attempts to answer the questions: (1) what are the impoliteness formulas used by the Iraqi learners of English in refusing marriage proposals?, and (2) What are their impoliteness triggers/causes and the purposes? The study is significant in bridging the gap that few linguistic types of research concentrate on studying intentionality and emotions allied with impoliteness. Data were collected from 35 Iraqi learners of English responding to 6 situations of marriage. The data were analyzed using Culpeper’s (2011) formulas of impoliteness and Bousfield’s (2007) impoliteness triggers and intentions. The findings revealed that the most regular impoliteness formulas were insults and pointed criticisms/complaints. Regarding impoliteness triggers, the Iraqi learners’ responses reflected anger and disapproval as the most common triggers of impoliteness. Lastly, impoliteness was utilized as an instrument of insulting, quipping, and showing grudge when refusing the marriage situations; however, some impoliteness occurred as a counseling technique. The study concludes with some recommendations for future works.
Keywords: Impoliteness, impoliteness formulas, impoliteness purposes, impoliteness triggers,
Iraqi English learners, marriage proposals

Cite as:  Qassim, T. A., &  Abbas, N. F. (2022). Impoliteness Formulas, Triggers, and Purposes to Refusal as Employed by Iraqi English Learners.  Arab World English Journal (AWEJ) Proceedings of  KUST, Iraq Conference 2022  (1) 44-58.


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Received: 2/8/2022
Accepted: 5/13/2022 
Published: 7/1/2022

Tabarek Ali Qasim got her MA degree in English language and Linguistics in 2021 from the department of English, College of Education for Women/ University of Baghdad. Her major is Pragmatics, Sociolinguistics, Applied Linguistics, Semantics, and (Critical) Discourse Analysis.

 Nawal Fadhil Abbas got her Ph.D. in English Language and Linguistics in 2014 from the School of Humanities, University of Sains Malaysia. Now, she is a professor teaching at the College of Education for Women, University of Baghdad. Her field of study is Pragmatics, Semantics, Critical Discourse Analysis, Critical Stylistics, and Corpus Linguistics.