What is it about?

This paper is a quantitative and qualitative investigation of impoliteness (i.e., intentional offensive behavior) in Facebook discussion threads about the Swedish government's response to the first wave of the Covid-19 pandemic in the spring of 2020. In terms of enactment of value orientations classified as different attitudes within the systemic framework, the analysis employs existing models of impoliteness and combines them with systemic functional approaches. As a result, the picture that emerges is one of a socially complex welfare state paradigm and its obligations to an individual.

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Why is it important?

Impoliteness has not been systematically studied in languages other than English. This seems the first study done on Swedish. Also, combining the corpus-driven models of impoliteness with a hands-on functional model yields a fuller picture of the social conflict underlying the analyzed data.


Combining the complex functional framework with the models of impoliteness and, importantly, the theoretical notion of the phenomenon, was not easy; however, I do hope there will be more studies combining different methodological approaches to impoliteness in order to pin down the complex nature of the notion.

Marta Andersson
Umea Universitet

Read the Original

This page is a summary of: ‘So many “virologists” in this thread!’, Pragmatics Quarterly Publication of the International Pragmatics Association (IPrA), February 2022, John Benjamins, DOI: 10.1075/prag.21014.and.
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