The speech act of advice in educational contexts in isiZulu

Ngcobo, Lazarus (2004-12)

Thesis (MA)--Stellenbosch University, 2004.


ENGLISH ABSTRACT: This study focuses on the communicative processes of advice in isiZulu through which people aid each other with problems and stresses of daily life, including ways in which support is communicated. When friends or family members attempt to help one another with stress and problems, they frequently give advice. Within the field of pragmatics, advice is a common but potentially face-threatening response to a friend or a loved one who is upset about a problem. Consequently it is useful to identify ways a speaker may show regard for face in this kind of episode. Advice can threaten the hearer's autonomy by imposing the speaker's authority and solutions on the hearer and it can also imply criticism of the hearer's emotional reaction or handling of the problem. In this study, twenty-one advice topics, by Goldsmith (2000) that can be used in various troubles talk episodes in isiZulu have been examined. It has been found that some advice situations have more topics than others. The situation with more advice topics is the one referred to as personal. This is because people are always very keen to give more advice to people with personal problems than to people with other problems. The situations with the least number of topics are abuse and teachers, because they are very sensitive in nature. The study found that the sensitivity comes from the fact that third parties are involved. People tend to be reluctant to give advice which might lead to confrontation between the parties that are involved. In this research, the parties that are involved are learners on the one side and the parents/teachers on the other side. The other factor is that people do not want to see a parent who is abusing his/her child going to jailor a teacher who does not like a particular child losing his/her job because of the advice they gave to the learners.

AFRIKAANSE OPSOMMING: Hierdie studie fokus op die kommunikatiewe prosesse van advies in isiZulu waardeur mense mekaar help met die probleme van die alledaagse lewe, insluitende die wyses waarop steun gekommunikeer word. Wanneer vriende en familielede poog om mekaar te help met probleme, gee hulle dikwels advies. Binne die veld van die pragmatiek, is advies 'n algemene, maar potensiële gesigsbedreigende ('face-threatening') respons teenoor 'n vriend of geliefde wat 'n probleem het. Gevolglik is dit nuttig om wyses te identifiseer waarop 'n spreker ontsag mag toon vir gesig ('face') in hierdie soort episode. Advies kan die spreker se outonomiteit bedreig deur die spreker se outoriteit en oplossings neer te druk op die hoorder en dit kan ook kritiek impliseer van die hoorder se emosionele reaksie op hantering van die probleem. In hierdie studie word een-en-twintig advies episodes van Goldsmith (2000) wat gebruik kan word in verskillende moeilikheidsgesprekke ('trouble talk') in isiZulu ondersoek. Daar is bevind dat sommige advies situasies meer onderwerpe as ander het. Die situasie met meer advies onderwerpe, is die persoonlike situasie. Die rede hiervoor is dat mense altyd meer gretig is om advies te gee aan ander mense met persoonlike probleme as aan mense met ander tipes probleme. Die situasies met die minste getalonderwerpe is 'mishandeling' en 'onderwysers' omdat dit baie sensitiewe onderwerpe is. Die studie bevind dat sensitiwiteit spruit uit die teenwoordigheid van 'n derde party se betrokkenheid. Mense blyk onwillig te wees om advies te gee wat mag lei tot konfrontasie tussen die partye betrokke. In hierdie navorsing, is die betrokke partye leerders, enersyds, en ouers of onderwysers, andersyds. 'n Verdere faktor is dat mense nie wil sien dat 'n ouer wat 'n kind mishandel na die gevangenis gaan nie, of dat 'n onderwyser wat nie van 'n spesifieke kind hou sy/haar werk verloor, weens die advies wat hulle aan die leerders gee nie.

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