Requesting the Context: A Context Analysis of Let Statement and If Statement Requests and Commands in the Santa Barbara Corpus of Spoken American English
Brown, Lynnelle Rhinier
This paper identifies two requestive forms in the Santa Barbara Corpus of Spoken American English, let statements and if statements, and the contextual conditions—linguistic, pragmatic, discourse and social—that co-occur with these forms. The analysis reveals a complex interplay of linguistic forms and contextual factors. The variables of social distance, social power, contingency, entitlement and specific discourse functions all influence the forms a speaker chooses when requesting, but not at the same time for both forms nor in equal measures. Rather, two or three contextual features become more or less relevant at a time, creating a distinct profile for each form.
speech act; request; corpus; context