Professional Interactions in Business Context : a comparison of enterprise meetings in France and in Taiwan
Triple Keywords
Grammar, Comparative and general--Context
Foreign languages
Communication, Primitive
Social progress
Distribution, Cooperative
Standard of value
Motivation (Psychology)
Grammar, Comparative and general--Context
Power (Social sciences)
Speech acts (Linguistics)


My thesis aims to develop two sections: A)The comparison of discursive behaviors in business negotiations between two parties: One is within the same culture and the other is in intercultural context. The data I present are all authentic transcriptions including of six business face-to-face negotiations: 2 negotiations spoken by native speakers in Mandarin Chinese, 2 negotiations spoken by native speakers in French and two negotiations spoken by native French, Chinese or Taiwanesein English as a language of communication. The corpus involve three languages and two cultures (Chinese and French). My first question is to see the impact of the usage of different languages during the process of negotiation. In continuation of the tradition of Sapir hypothesis - Whorf (Sapir 1949 and Whorf 1956) and the pragmatic analysis of verbal exchanges (Wierrzbicka, 1991; Peeters, 2009; Kerbrat-Orecchioni, 1994), presented how the language reflects the culture. With an analysis of certain linguistic characteristics, I analyze verbal interactions such as the constructions of speech turns (Sacks, Schegloff and Jefferson, 1974), speech acts in connection with the theory of face (Goffman, 1993; Brown and Levinson 1978) and the interpersonal relationship (Kerbrat-Orecchioni 1994,2001,2002). My questions are: Does the negotiation interaction (Kerbrat-Orecchioni 1990, 1992.1994) differ from one language (L1) to another( L2) (L1: Chinese or French and L2: English) between two cultures? Do the negotiators use another type of ritual politeness (Béal, 2010) in L2 than in their mother tongue? Mono-cultural and inter-cultural comparison allows us to confirm these questions and also help determine to what extent of connections with their own culture by using L1 and L2 for the negotiators. B)More specifically, I’d like to establish the analytical model of offers in the business negotiation in two cultures (French and Chinese). The progress, results and decision-making in negotiation, are the important moments which allow us to see the two interlocutors if they reach their consensus or fail the cooperation. In this study, I take the assumption is that the result or final decision of the negotiation is related to proposal of interactional offers. . Although some researchers present the negotiation strategies (eg, Hammer and Yukl 1977, Roth and Murnighan 1982; Maynard 1984; Tutzauer 1992), there were few empirical studies related to the negotiation offers in conversation analysis including speech acts such as promises and commitments. My study is to fill up this gap. In business negotiations, the acts of deals between buyer and seller represent an exchange of economic value with a product or service. The acts of offer s have strong sense of performatives ( assertives and commissives) (Searle, 1972). My questions are: Does it exist another form of commitment instead of exchange of the economic value? For example: a promise for future cooperation or building up interpersonal relationship? This research deals with certain verbal features such turn-takings, the motivation of overlaps or interruptions during the exchange. A major objective of this study is to develop an analytical model that can be used to describe the nature of offers in business negotiations at different levels of discourse between the two cultures. Based on the authentic corpus, I try to light on the strateg(ies)of offers in business negotiation. The study is essentially analyzed with the method of linguistic pragmatics and also adopts a quantitative and qualitative comparative approach. The theory of speech acts plays a major role in the definition of “offers” identifying implementation strategies. At the same time, this research is interdisciplinary which relates to the economy, international trade, intercultural management, and sociology.

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