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    Macalester College
  Feb 23, 2018
College Catalog 2012-2013 [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

JAPA 235 - Communicative Strategies in Japanese Society

Cross-Listed as  
This course aims at understanding communicative strategies employed by Japanese speakers. Students of Japanese language often wonder what cultural assumptions and strategies lie behind the language they are studying. In language classrooms such issues are touched upon but never fully explained in the interest of time. This course offers in-depth explorations of the interrelationship between Japanese language and society. Students will be encouraged to reflect upon their own communicative strategies. They will also read about strategies used by American English speakers as a point of comparison. How is gender articulated in Japanese society? Is the so-called feminine speech in Japanese real? If the feminine speech is considered “powerless,” how do women in authoritative positions speak? Problems in U.S.-Japan business and other negotiations are often reported in the popular press. How are they related to how people in each country communicate with one another? Japanese people are supposed to be “polite.” How, to whom, and in what context do they express politeness? Are their politeness strategies markedly different from those of other countries? Students will have opportunities to explore issues such as these. No Japanese language ability required. Alternate years. (4 Credits)