A Discussion of the Art of Apology From the Perspective of Speech Act Theory

Weihua YU


In our communication, apology is an important part of politeness in many speech communities. Starting from the general review of basic theories, the paper here explains the definition and functions of apology speech act, analyzes strategies taken by speakers when they make an apology, including directive apologetic speech act and indirect apologetic speech act. It explores influential factors for apology speech and highlights that the degree of offense determines different measures of apology. Finally it examines the pragmatic failure in receiving apology, pointing out that knowing when and how to make a proper apology is critical for our harmonious interpersonal communication.


Apology; Offensive; Remedy; Pragmatic

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.3968/n


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