Impoliteness in only drunks and children tell the truth by drew Hayden Taylor


  • Mariam Alawawda School of Foreign Languages, Faculty of Education, Cyprus International University, North Cyprus, Mersin 10 Turkey
  • Ahdi Hassan Plcorpora, Islamabad, Pakistan


communicative language, conventionalized devices, English language, implicational devices, impoliteness, interactional sociolinguistics, language usage, linguistic politeness, linguistics circle, politeness


The present study attempts to examine (im) politeness in Only Drunks and Children Tell the Truth, a drama play written by Drew Hayden Taylor. Politeness and impoliteness have received a great amount of attention from many scholars in recent years. The study applied a classification developed by Culpeper in his latest book entitled Impoliteness: Using Language to Cause Offence. The classification mainly focuses on conventionalized and implicational impoliteness in literary texts. Drew Heyden through his characters’ conversational dialogues presents numerous (im) polite expressions to both entertain and make actors and audiences think critically. This study applied the previously mentioned classification to examine impoliteness in characters’ expressions. The findings revealed that impoliteness is a common phenomenon in the language used especially by women characters in the play. The main reason behind this is the emotional pain the characters experienced in their life. Impoliteness was used by both females and males, but it was found that women used more impoliteness strategies than men.


Download data is not yet available.


Arndt, H., & Janney, R. W. (1985). Improving emotive communication: verbal, prosodic and kinesic conflictavoidance techniques. Per linguam, 1(1).

Ayd?no?lu, N. (2013). Politeness and Impoliteness Strategies: An Analysis of Gender Differences in Geralyn l. Horton's Plays. Procedia-Social and Behavioral Sciences, 83, 473-482.

Bargiela-Chiappini, F. (2003). Face and politeness: new (insights) for old (concepts). Journal of pragmatics, 35(10-11), 1453-1469.

Brown, P., Levinson, S. C., & Levinson, S. C. (1987). Politeness: Some universals in language usage (Vol. 4). Cambridge university press.

Brown, R., & Gilman, A. (1989). Politeness theory and Shakespeare's four major tragedies. Language in society, 18(2), 159-212.

Chen, R. (2001). Self-politeness: A proposal. Journal of pragmatics, 33(1), 87-106.

Culpeper, J. (1996). Towards an anatomy of impoliteness. Journal of pragmatics, 25(3), 349-367.

Culpeper, J. (2010). Conventionalised impoliteness formulae. Journal of pragmatics, 42(12), 3232-3245.

Culpeper, J. (2011). 13. Politeness and impoliteness. In Pragmatics of society (pp. 393-438). De Gruyter Mouton.

Culpeper, J., Bousfield, D., & Wichmann, A. (2003). Impoliteness revisited: With special reference to dynamic and prosodic aspects. Journal of pragmatics, 35(10-11), 1545-1579.

Fukada, A., & Asato, N. (2004). Universal politeness theory: application to the use of Japanese honorifics. Journal of pragmatics, 36(11), 1991-2002.

Goffman, E. (2005). Interaction ritual: Essays in face to face behavior. AldineTransaction.

Hassan, A., Mitchell, R., & Buriro, H. A. (2020). Changes in uses of salutations in British English. International research journal of management, IT and social sciences, 7(1), 197-204.

Haugh, M. (2015). Impoliteness and taking offence in initial interactions. Journal of Pragmatics, 86, 36-42.

Haugh, M., & Bousfield, D. (2012). Mock impoliteness, jocular mockery and jocular abuse in Australian and British English. Journal of pragmatics, 44(9), 1099-1114.

Katz, M. H. (2015). Politeness theory and the classification of speech acts. Working Papers of the Linguistics Circle, 25(2), 45-55.

Kecskes, I. (2015). Intercultural impoliteness. Journal of Pragmatics, 86, 43-47.

Kienpointner, M. (2008). Impoliteness and emotional arguments.

Limberg, H. (2009). Impoliteness and threat responses. Journal of Pragmatics, 41(7), 1376-1394.

Lorenzo-Dus, N., Blitvich, P. G. C., & Bou-Franch, P. (2011). On-line polylogues and impoliteness: The case of postings sent in response to the Obama Reggaeton YouTube video. Journal of pragmatics, 43(10), 2578-2593.

Maledo, R. O., & Edhere, J. U. (2021). Experiential metafunction: representing environmental degradation. Linguistics and Culture Review, 5(1), 129-145.

Mandala, H. (2018). Divergent Principles of Politeness in Verbal and Non-Verbal Directive Speech Act. International research journal of engineering, IT & scientific research, 4(2), 41-51.

Mills, G. J. (2014). Dialogue in joint activity: Complementarity, convergence and conventionalization. New ideas in psychology, 32, 158-173.

Mills, S. (2009). Impoliteness in a cultural context. Journal of Pragmatics, 41(5), 1047-1060.

Rudanko, J. (2006). Aggravated impoliteness and two types of speaker intention in an episode in Shakespeare's Timon of Athens. Journal of pragmatics, 38(6), 829-841.

Ryabova, M. (2015). Politeness Strategy in Everyday Communication. Procedia-Social and Behavioral Sciences, 206, 90-95.

Sifianou, M. (2012). Disagreements, face and politeness. Journal of pragmatics, 44(12), 1554-1564.

Spencer-Oatey, H. (2011). Conceptualising ‘the relational’in pragmatics: Insights from metapragmatic emotion and (im) politeness comments. Journal of Pragmatics, 43(14), 3565-3578.

Suroso, A., Hendriarto, P., Kartika MR, G. N., Pattiasina, P. J., & Aslan, A. (2021). Challenges and opportunities towards Islamic cultured generation: socio-cultural analysis. Linguistics and Culture Review, 5(1), 180-194.

Terkourafi, M. (2015). Conventionalization: A new agenda for im/politeness research. Journal of Pragmatics, 86, 11-18.

Tripathy, M. (2018). Building quality teamwork to achieve excellence in business organizations. International research journal of management, IT and social sciences, 5(3), 1-7.

Watts, R. J. (2003). Politeness. Cambridge University Press.

Zheng, X., Zhang, F., Wang, K., Zhang, W., Li, Y., Sun, Y., ... & Xu, L. (2021). Smart biosensors and intelligent devices for salivary biomarker detection. TrAC Trends in Analytical Chemistry, 116281.



How to Cite

Alawawda, M., & Hassan, A. (2021). Impoliteness in only drunks and children tell the truth by drew Hayden Taylor. Linguistics and Culture Review, 5(1), 195-202.



Research Articles