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Sociolinguistic and pragmalinguistic aspects of 'A bit of Fry and Laurie'


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Turković, Jasna. (2011). Sociolinguistic and pragmalinguistic aspects of 'A bit of Fry and Laurie' . Diploma Thesis. Filozofski fakultet u Zagrebu, Department of English Language and Literature. [mentor Žic Fuchs, Milena].

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Out of sociolinguistic and pragmalinguistic phenomena in the television show ‘A Bit of Fry and Laurie’ the most represented are register, taboo language, swearwords, forms of address, turn taking, interruption, cooperative principle and politeness. By using either the stereotypical or the opposite register, the show ridicules the perception of high percentage of registers as a discernible, often negative, aspects of a profession, class or behaviour. The majority of swearwords is used by working and lower-middle class. There are rare instances of a single taboo word used in a sketch as they are more frequently intentionally bundled together in order to expose the audience to them and, thus, ridicule the notion of any word being improper because of certain social concepts. The appropriate and inappropriate instances of addressing, improper turn taking, resulting in interruption and overlap, and the violation of cooperative principle are all frequent sources of humour in the show. Where politeness is concerned, in some sketches it is marginal but in others it is the main theme. In general, there is a noticeable difference between the quality of (im)politeness between the working/lower-middle and upper-middle/upper class. In other words, people of lower classes are more explicit in both their politeness and impoliteness while the upper classes are more subtle in theirs. In conclusion, the humoristic aspect of a large number of sketches relies, to a certain degree, on these phenomena. Therefore, it can be deduced that the audience does not only react to the solely lexical aspects of humour but to the pragmalinguistic and sociolinguistic aspects as well.

Item Type: Diploma Thesis
Subjects: English language and literature
Departments: Department of English Language and Literature
Supervisor: Žic Fuchs, Milena
Date Deposited: 17 Feb 2012 09:13
Last Modified: 09 Jul 2014 23:24

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