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Research Article

EEO. 2021; 20(5): 1741-1752

Variation of Language Prestige and Politeness Patterns in Genders: A Punjabi Speakers’ Community Analysis

Rahat Bashir, Sadia Asif.


This study aims to dig out the politeness strategies employed by Punjabi speakers; males and females, while requesting their seniors, juniors and friends. Furthermore, it seeks out their preferred language; English, Urdu or Punjabi, during these face-saving acts. The researcher enquired two queries; if there is an association between gender and politeness strategies and gender and their preferred language code. Secondly, which of the strategies and languages are the most preferred ones, while requesting different interlocutors who are different to them in their social status, intimacy and power?The sample comprisedof 168Punjabis(male=83,females=85),andaDiscourseCompletionTest(DCT)wasgiven to them to collect data. The results were analyzed through SPSS by applying the chi-square test. The results concluded that there is a close association between gender and language choice while requesting friends and subordinates, but no difference is observed in the language choice and politeness strategy while requesting someone who is senior to them socially. Interestingly, females have totally abandoned Punjabi with their friends, and they are more into Urdu, while males’ second preferred language is Punjabi, unlike females. Males request their juniors in Punjabi, contrastingly to females who use the Urdu language. The research is beneficial to the language policy makers and the institutes who are stakeholders of languages and who are responsible for the maintenance of languages and preservation of culture.

Key words: politeness, politeness strategies, Punjabi culture and language, language prestige

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