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La fórmula de tratamiento usted como marcador étnico del habla: Sus correlaciones con algunos factores de la tríada ecológica en contexto de etnias en contacto
Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Spanish, Portuguese and Latin American Studies.
2006 (Spanish; Castilian)Doctoral thesis, monograph (Other academic)Alternative title
The address form usted as an ethnic speech marker : Its correlations with some factors of the ecological triad in context of ethnic groups in contact (English)
Abstract [en]

This study aims at exploring the social, affective and cognitive variables that would be related to the use of the address form usted in Chilean Spanish. Specifically, we refer to the use that can be observed in interactions between Chileans residing in Sweden. A particular aspect of this situation is that, while the majority group almost exclusively use the form that is commonly associated with solidarity (in this case the Swedish pronoun du), the minority group referred to maintains the pronoun that normally is associated with power, distance, formality and politeness: usted. In other words, while the equivalent in Swedish of usted (ni) is seldom used in majority language, the opposite is observed in the minority language object of study.

We believe that the motives for the use of usted in this minority context are more complex than they appear to be. Consequently, an alternative hypothesis has been worked out with reference to theories within the area of Social Psychology. On this basis the following main hypothesis was formulated: Individuals representing the minority group in ethnic contact situations tend to increase their identification with the minority group in order to be admitted by and adhere to this group, if they feel that they are rejected by the majority group. The form usted is not the result of a fortuitous situation, nor can it be explained by the fact that it is the normal usage in the native country, but that it fulfils a strategic objective: to mark the affiliation with the minority group.

The method has consisted in grouping together and correlating factors pertaining to the environment, the agent and the guest according to the Ecological Triad, the interaction of which contributes to the appearance of the observed behaviour that underlies this study. The statistical analysis enabled us to verify what was put forward in the hypothesis.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Stockholm: Institutionen för spanska, portugisiska och latinamerikastudier , 2006. , 184 p.
Keyword [es]
majority group, minority group, politeness, address form usted, learning, culture, social psychology, Theory of Planned Action, Accomodation Theory, Theory of Rejection-Identification, Theory of Adaptive Control of Thought, Social Cognitive Theory, Theory of Ecological Systems, cognitive context, ethnic marker in speech, ethnic contact, behaviour, intention, assumptions, beliefs, ethnic identity, usted, attitudes, perceptions, Ecological Triad
National Category
Specific Languages
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-1394ISBN: 91-7155-355-XOAI: diva2:190006
Public defence
2007-01-13, hörsal 5, hus B, Universitetsvägen 10, Stockholm, 10:00
Available from: 2006-12-15 Created: 2006-12-15Bibliographically approved

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