Interlanguage Development of English Complimenting Speech Acts: Strategies of Performance

Author: Anzhelika Solodka

Keywords: complimenting speech act, interlanguage, pragmatic competence, pragmatic failure, pragmatic transfer



Every speaker of a native language undergoes an interlanguage continuum or the way that the language learners go through from the first to the second language. Interlanguage is an essential theory for teachers to know what goes on in the learning process. It makes the teachers look at the varieties of mistaken linguistic forms with an eye for improvement. Interlanguage is the main motive to conduct this research. The article aims to analyze the interlanguage used by the Ukrainian participants. The study analyzes how semi-fluent to fluent Ukrainian speakers of English produce compliments as a speech act. Then the results of the linguistic patterns of the same speech act to those used by native speakers of English in the US are compared. Participants were interviewed via a survey to collect the following data:   compliment forms, correlation of compliment formulas, Russian/Ukrainian transfer of typical compliments, and common idiomatic complement expressions.  The results of this study have cultural implications in the teaching of the second language (English) in the Ukrainian context. To simplify the act of complimenting second language (L2) students, the research suggests some main speech tactics of producing compliments based on metalinguistic awareness and contextual factors. It helps to attain pragmatic teaching goals and supports the interlanguage development of learners to be more productive in their second language.