Impacts of Face Concerns on Interpersonal Conflict Management Strategies in Japan

Moriizumi, Satoshi; Nakatsugawa, Satomi; Takai, Jiro
January 2008
Conference Papers -- National Communication Association;2008, p1
Conference Paper
The present study examines the impacts of face concerns and relational factors on interpersonal conflict management styles and their language expressions. A total of 389 Japanese university students responded to rate (1) intimacy and social status, (2) face concerns (i.e., self, self-autonomy, self-approval, other-autonomy, and other-approval face concerns), (3) interpersonal conflict management styles (i.e., dominating, integrating, obliging, and avoiding), and (4) the likelihood of using language expressions. Four situations were organized by manipulating the target’s intimacy and social status (i.e., intimate friend, acquainted classmate, intimate senior, and acquainted senior). Each situation comprised 20 conflict management expressions based on differences in language functions. Factor analysis extracted four factors: polite integrating, colloquial integrating, and colloquial assertive and obliging expressions. Path analysis was conducted to investigate the influence of the relational factors and face concerns on interpersonal conflict management styles and their language behavior. The general results confirmed and further elaborated on the extant model offered by face theories. For instance, social status and intimacy directly influenced face concerns and interpersonal conflict management styles. Self-autonomy face concerns had a positive impact on the dominating strategy, while other-related face concerns promoted obliging and integrating strategies. Clear relationships were also found between conflict management strategies and language expressions. However, some discrepancies with extant models were found in the relationship between face concerns and conflict styles. The reasons for this and implication for future research are discussed from cultural perspectives. ..PAT.-Unpublished Manuscript


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