face-work

face-work

the sequence of interaction in which a potential or actual ‘loss of face’ is dealt with by those involved in interaction. For GOFFMAN, such sequences are sufficiently standardized to be regarded as ‘ritual’, e.g. a ‘transgression’ is noted; the ‘transgressor’ acknowledges this (e.g. ‘silly me’); this recognition is accepted by other parties to the interaction; the offender registers his gratitude for this. In Goffman's work and in related forms of sociology such as ETHNOMETHODOLOGY, the existence of such relatively standardized sequences are seen as a central element in the everyday social order.
References in periodicals archive ?
Such face-work is increasingly important for national leaders and diplomats who perform simultaneously on the back-stage and the front-stage of international relations.
Among the topics are discursive approaches to politeness and impoliteness, prosody and impoliteness, courtroom discourse as a case illustrating the limits of politeness, institutional and intercultural contexts of first-order and second-order politeness, the metalinguistic discussion of Tony Blair's slave trade apology, and analyzing face-work about issues of competence and non-competence.
This paper examines the Chinese self-deprecation phenomenon from a sociopragmatic perspective, analyzing the ritual and pragmatic implications that arise from face-work sought to fulfill the face needs of interlocutors in communicative events.