Books/Edited Volumes

Félix-Brasdefer, J. C. & Shively, R. L. (2021). New Directions in Second 
Language Pragmatics. Berlin, Germany & Boston, MA, US. Mouton de Gruyter. [ISBN: 9783110721638]

New Directions in Second Language Pragmatics brings together varying perspectives in second language (L2) pragmatics to show both historical developments in the field, while also looking towards the future, including theoretical, empirical, and implementation perspectives. This volume is divided in four sections: teaching and learning speech acts, assessing pragmatic competence, analyzing discourses in digital contexts, and current issues in L2 pragmatics. The chapters focus on various aspects related to the learning, teaching, and assessing of L2 pragmatics and cover a range of learning environments. The authors address current topics in L2 pragmatics such as: speech acts from a discursive perspective; pragmatics instruction in the foreign language classroom and during study abroad; assessment of pragmatic competence; research methods used to collect pragmatics data; pragmatics in computer-mediated contexts; the role of implicit and explicit knowledge; discourse markers as a resource for interaction; and the framework of translingual practice. Taken together, the chapters in this volume foreground innovations and new directions in the field of L2 pragmatics while, at the same time, ground their work in the existing literature. Consequently, this volume both highlights where the field of L2 pragmatics has been and offers cutting-edge insights into where it is going in the future.

Koike, D., & Félix-Brasdefer, J. C. (Eds.). (2021). The Routledge Handbook of Spanish Pragmatics. Oxford /New York: Routledge Press. [ISBN 9781138316461]

The Routledge Handbook of Spanish Pragmatics is the first volume to offer a comprehensive overview of advances in Spanish Pragmatics, addressing different types of interaction and the variables, both social and linguistic, that can affect them.

Written by a diverse set of experts in the field, the handbook unifies two major approaches to the study of pragmatics, the Anglo-American and European Continental traditions. Thirty-three chapters cover in detail both pragmatic foundations (e.g. speech act theory, implicature and relevance, deixis) and interfaces with other concepts, including: Discourse, Variation (culture and interculture), (Im)politeness, Humor, Learning contexts and teaching, and Technology.

This is an ideal reference for advanced undergraduate and postgraduate students, and researchers of Spanish language and linguistics.

Félix-Brasdefer, J. C. (2021). Teaching and Assessing Pragmatic and Intercultural Competence in Foreign Language Contexts. IU Working Papers in Linguistics, vol. 21(2).   [Preface, pp 1-14]. Nine graduate students published their papers written in my classes.

This special volume of IULCWP represents a welcome contribution to the teaching and assessment of pragmatics and intercultural competence in foreign language contexts. The nine pedagogical activities, written by expereinced language instructors of Spanish and French at Indiana University, are informed by current research in second language pragmatics and intercultural competence. The instructional units were conceptualized and completed in two graduate courses taught by Dr. Félix-Brasdefer, i.e., L2 Pragmatics: Language Learning and Teaching (HISP-S 716, Spring 2018) and The Intercultural Speaker Abroad (HISP-S 612, Fall 2020). These pedagogical activities were designed to test key models of pragmatics instruction and intercultural communicative competence. Authors also had the opportunity to pilot their activities with students learning Spanish or French at Indiana University . The first five contributions were piloted in face-to-face classroom interactions, while the last four, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, were tested virtually through Zoom teaching sessions.

Félix-Brasdefer, J. C. & M. E. Placencia (Eds.). (2020). Pragmatic Variation in Service Encounter Interactions across the Spanish-Speaking World. Oxford/New York: Routledge. [ISBN 9781138479593]

Pragmatic Variation in Service Encounter Interactions across the Spanish-Speaking World expands the study of service encounter interactions into new face-to-face and digital contexts and new (sub)varieties of Spanish.

The chapters examine pragmatic variation in a range of contexts, representing ten countries and twelve (sub)varieties of Spanish. Part I explores macrosocial factors such as region, gender, age, and social class, while Part II focuses on microsocial and situational factors. Part III concludes the volume with theoretical and methodological contributions to the field.

This volume will be of particular interest to advanced students and researchers of Spanish and Linguistics.

Félix-Brasdefer, J. C. (2019). Pragmática del español: contexto, uso y variación. Oxford & New York: Routledge Press. [ISBN 9781138215801]

Pragmática del español: contexto, uso y variación introduces the central topics in pragmatics and discourse from a sociolinguistic perspective.

Pragmatic variation is addressed within each topic, with examples from different varieties of Spanish spoken in Latin America, Spain and the United States.

Key topics include:

  • speech acts in context and deictic expressions
  • implicit meaning and inferential communication
  • intercultural competence in study abroad contexts
  • pragmatics and computer-mediated discourse
  • politeness and impoliteness in the Spanish-speaking world
  • the pragmatics of Spanish among US heritage speakers
  • the teaching and learning of pragmatics.

A companion website provides additional exercises and a corpus of Spanish data for student research projects. A sample syllabus and suggestions for further reading help instructors tailor the material to a one-semester course or as a supplement to introduction to Hispanic linguistics courses.

This is an ideal resource for advanced undergraduate and postgraduate students, at level B2–C2 of the Common European Framework for Languages, and Intermediate High–Advanced High on the ACTFL proficiency scales.

Félix-Brasdefer, J. C. (2015). The Language of Service Encounters: A Pragmatics-Discursive Approach. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. [ISBN 9781108718752]

Service encounters are ubiquitous in social interaction. We buy food and everyday items in supermarkets, convenience stores, or markets; we purchase merchandise in department stores; or we request information at a visitor information center. This book offers a comprehensive account of service encounters in commercial and non-commercial settings. Grounded in naturally occurring face-to-face interactions and drawing on a pragmatic-discursive approach, J. César Félix-Brasdefer sets out a framework for the analysis of transactional and relational talk in various contexts in the United States and Mexico. This book investigates cross-cultural and intra-lingual pragmatic variation during the negotiation of service. The author provides a broad review of research on service encounters to date, and analyzes characteristics of sales transactions, such as participants' roles, pragmatic and discourse functions of relational talk and address forms, the realization of politeness, and changes in alignment from transactional to relational talk.

Félix-Brasdefer, J. C. (Ed.) (2015). Current Issues in Pragmatic Variation. IU Working Papers in Linguistics, vol. 15(1). Ten students (3 undergraduate and 7 graduate) published their papers written in my classes.

The papers in this thematic volume examine current topics in pragmatic variation from an interdisciplinary perspective. Although early studies on dialectology from a pragmatic view appeared in the late 1970s (e.g. Schlieben-Lange & Weydt, 1978), the field of pragmatic variation with a focus on regional varieties was formally introduced at the 9th International Pragmatics Conference in 2005 that took place in Riva del Garda, Italy, as part of a panel organized by Klaus Schneider and Anne Barron. These scholars later (2008) published an edited volume, entitled Variational Pragmatics: A Focus on Regional Varieties in Pluricentric Languages, which comprised 10 papers on different aspects of pragmatics across varieties of Dutch, English, French, German, and Spanish. Pragmatic variation looks at the intersection of pragmatics and sociolinguistics by looking at the impact of social factors (e.g. gender, age, region) on communicative language use.

Bardovi-Harlig, K. & Félix-Brasdefer, J. C. (eds.). (2016). Pragmatics and Language Learning, vol 14. Manoa, HI: Second Language Teaching and Curriculum Center University of Hawaii.

This volume contains a selection of papers presented at the 2014 International Conference of Pragmatics and Language Learning at Indiana University. It includes fourteen papers on a variety of topics, with a diversity of first and second languages, and a wide range of methods used to collect pragmatic data in L2 and FL settings. This volume is divided into three main sections: Acquisition of Second-Language Pragmatics, Research in Pedagogical Contexts, and Brief Summaries and Reports. The articles advance our understanding of second language pragmatics with regard to learning and the use of pragmalinguistic resources necessary to produce and comprehend speech acts, conventional expressions, discourse markers, relational talk to develop L2 symbolic competence, and polite expressions in language textbooks.

lix-Brasdefer, J. C. & Koike, D. (eds.). (2012). Pragmatic Variation in First and Second Language Contexts: Methodological Issues. Amsterdam/Philadelphia: John Benjamins. [ISBN 9789027218728]

Departing from Schneider and Barron (2008), representing the emerging field of Variational Pragmatics, this volume examines pragmatic variation focusing on methods utilized to collect and analyze data in a variety of first (L1) and second (L2) language contexts. The objectives are to: (1) examine variation in such areas of pragmatics as speech acts, conventional expressions, metapragmatics, stance, frames, mitigation, communicative action, (im)politeness, and implicature; and (2) critically review central methodological concerns relevant for research in pragmatic variation, such as coding, ethical issues, qualitative and quantitative methods, and individual variation. Theoretical frameworks vary from variationist and interactional sociolinguistics, to variational pragmatics. This collection contains eleven chapters by leading scholars, including two state-of-the art chapters on key methodological issues of pragmatic variation study. Given the theoretical perspectives, methodological focus, and analyses, the book will be of interest to those who study pragmatics, discourse analysis, second language acquisition, sociolinguistics, corpus linguistics, and language variation.

Félix-Brasdefer, J. C. (2008). Politeness in Mexico and the United States: A Contrastive Study of the Realization and Perception of Refusals. Amsterdam/Philadelphia: John Benjamins. [ISBN 9789027254153]

This book explores the issue of politeness phenomena and socially appropriate behavior in two societies, Mexico and the United States, in three different contexts: refusing invitations, requests, and suggestions. In addition to a state-of-the-art review of the speech act of refusals in numerous languages, the book provides a rigorous analysis of data collection methods utilized to examine speech act behavior at the production and perception levels. Many examples of native speaker interactions illustrate the similarities and differences observed in the realization patterns and the perception of refusals by Mexicans and Americans in formal and informal situations. The data are analyzed in terms of refusal sequences and pragmatic strategies which are strategically used to carry out relational work during the negotiation of face. The results of the quantitative and qualitative analyses are interpreted in light of the notions of face, politeness, and relational work in Mexico and the United States. This publication will be of interest to researchers and students in pragmatics and discourse analysis, cross-cultural communication, and sociology.

Bardovi-Harlig, K., Félix-Brasdefer, J. C., & Omar, A. (2006). (eds.). Pragmatics and Language Learning, vol. 11. Manoa, HI: Second Language Teaching and Curriculum Center University of Hawai’i.

This volume of Pragmatics & Language Learning, a refereed series sponsored by the National Foreign Language Resource Center at the University of Hawaiʻi, features cutting-edge research on L2 pragmatics from a wide range of theoretical and methodological approaches. It offers fresh perspectives on standard topics such as the use and learning of speech acts and the pragmatic meanings of linguistic resources, and the effect of planned intervention on pragmatic development in language instruction. The chapters also document researchers' increasing attention to different forms of computer-mediated communication as environments for using and developing L2 pragmatic competence, and of conversation analysis as an approach to different aspects of interaction in a variety of settings.