Requesting Behavior of Tenggerese Ethnic in East Java-Indonesia

Sukarsono Sukarsono, Edi Soebroto, Joko Nurkamto


This article explores the requesting behavior of Tenggerese ethnic, a relic Javanese community inhibiting the highlands of mounts Bromo, Tengger, and Semeru located in East Java, Indonesia. My aim in the first part is to describe the forms of requestive utterances of the ethnic members along with the use of linguistic mitigating devices within the utterances. Through the analysis on the Tenggerese’s natural conversations, I found that their requestive utterances tend to be realized in a direct illocution. Their polite behavior is manifested in the uses of mitigating devices, placed either within or outside the head act. Subsequently, I attempt to explain the relationship between their socio-cultural values and their politeness behavior in expressing requests. In this part, I argue that the verbal politeness behavior of Tenggerese, in fact, reflects the two fundamental socio-cultural principles of Tenggerese, i.e. the principles of group harmony and deference.

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International Journal of Linguistics  ISSN 1948-5425  Email:

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