Описание презентации по отдельным слайдам:
The importance of being British F
The weather as the beginning of the conversation A principal rule concerns the contexts in which weather-speak can be used. English talk about the weather all the time, that it is a national obsession or fixation, but this is sloppy observation: in fact, there are three quite specific contexts in which weather-speak is prescribed. Weatherspeak can be used: -as a simple greeting -as an ice-breaker leading to conversation on other matters -as a ‘default’, ‘filler’ or ‘displacement’ subject, when conversation on other matters falters, and there is an awkward or uncomfortable lull.
The Weather Hierarchy Rule The certain remarks about the weather, such as ‘At least it’s not raining’ on a cold day, virtually guarantee agreement. This is because there is an unofficial English weather hierarchy to which almost everyone subscribes. In descending order, from best to worst, the hierarchy is as follows: sunny and warm/mild sunny and cool/cold cloudy and warm/mild cloudy and cool/cold rainy and warm/mild rainy and cool/cold
WEATHER-SPEAK RULES AND ENGLISHNESS In the reciprocity and context rules, we see clear signs of reserve and social inhibition, but also the ingenious use of ‘facilitators’ to overcome these handicaps. The agreement rule and its exceptions provide hints about the importance of politeness and avoidance of conflict (as well as the approval of conflict in specific social contexts) – and the precedence of etiquette over logic.
How to begin the grooming-talk Grooming-talk starts with greeting-talk. Weather-speak is needed in this context partly because greetings and introductions are such an awkward business for the English. The problem has become particularly acute since the decline of ‘How do you do?’ as the standard, all-purpose greeting. The ‘How do you do?’ greeting – where the correct response is not to answer the question, but to repeat it back, ‘How do you do?’, like an echo or a well trained parrot13 – is still in use in upper-class and upper-middle circles, but the rest are left floundering, never knowing quite what to say. Instead of sneering at the old-fashioned stuffiness of the ‘How do you do?’ ritual, we would do better to mount a campaign for its revival: it would solve so many problems.
Women who use this variant (and it is only women; men do not air-kiss, unless they are very camp gays, and even then it is done ‘ironically’) are disparagingly referred to as ‘Mwah-Mwahs’. Even in the social circles where cheek-kissing is acceptable, one can still never be entirely sure whether one kiss or two is required, resulting in much awkward hesitation and bumping as the parties try to second-guess each other. Handshakes are now the norm in business introductions – or rather, they are the norm when people in business are introduced to each other for the first time. Ironically, the first introduction, where a degree of formality is expected, is the easiest. (Note, though, that the English handshake is always somewhat awkward, very brief, performed ‘at arm’s length’, and without any of the spare-hand involvement – clasping, forearm patting, etc. – found in less inhibited cultures.) Awkwardness Rules
The No-name Rule The ‘brash American’ approach: ‘Hi, I’m Bill from Iowa,’ particularly if accompanied by an outstretched hand and beaming smile, makes the English wince and cringe-wrong way Goodbye, nice to meet you, er, oh – I didn’t catch your name?’ as though you have only just noticed the omission. Your new acquaintance should then divulge his or her name, and you may now, at last, introduce yourself – but in an offhand way, as though it is not a matter of any importance: ‘I’m Bill, by the way.-the right way
Contrary to popular belief, researchers16 have found that men gossip just as much as women. In one English study, both sexes devoted the same amount of conversation time (about 65 per cent) to social topics such as personal relationships; in another, the difference was found to be quite small, with gossip accounting for 55 per cent of male conversation time and 67 per cent of female time. As sport and leisure have been shown to occupy about 10 per cent of conversation time, discussion of football could well account for the difference. Men were certainly found to be no more likely than women to discuss ‘important’ or ‘highbrow’ subjects such as politics, work, art and cultural matters – except (and this was a striking difference) when women were present. On their own, men gossip, with no more than five per cent of conversation time devoted to non-social subjects such as work or politics. It is only in mixed-sex groups, where there are women to impress, that the proportion of male conversation time devoted to these more ‘highbrow’ subjects increases dramatically, to between 15 and 20 per cent. Gossip rules
The English women I interviewed all agreed that a particular tone of voice was considered appropriate for gossip. The gossip-tone should be high and quick, or sometimes a stage whisper, but always highly animated. ‘Gossip’s got to start with something like [quick, high-pitched, excited tone] “Oooh – Guess what? Guess what?”’ explained one woman, ‘or “Hey, listen, listen [quick, urgent, stage-whisper] – you know what I heard?”’ Another told me: ‘You have to make it sound surprising or scandalous, even when it isn’t really. You’ll go, “Well, don’t tell anyone, but . . .” even when it’s not really that big of a secret.’
The Detail Rule Females also stressed the importance of detail in the telling of gossip, and again bemoaned the shortcomings of males in this matter, claiming that men ‘never know the details’. ‘Men just don’t do the he-said-she-said thing,’ one informant told me, ‘and it’s no good unless you actually know what people said.’ Another said: ‘Women tend to speculate more . . . They’ll talk about why someone did something, give a history to the situation.’ For women, this detailed speculation about possible motives and causes, requiring an exhaustive raking over ‘history’, is a crucial element of gossip, as is detailed speculation about possible outcomes. English males find all this detail boring, irrelevant and, of course, un-manly.
The End Thanks for attention
|Включите уведомления прямо сейчас и мы сразу сообщим Вам о важных новостях. Не волнуйтесь, мы будем отправлять только самое главное.|