Compliment Speech Genre In Bashkir Discourse


This article is devoted to compliments in the system of speech acts of the Bashkir language. Currently, many researchers are interested in studying speech acts. Our speech reflects the level of general culture, state of mind, depth of thinking and intelligence. Problems of interpersonal verbal communication and interaction of native speakers require an in-depth study of any form of their speech behavior and their communicative and pragmatic characteristics. Compliments are of particular interest in connection with the pragmatic focus on the successful implementation of language communication. In ancient times people realized that words are inherently omnipotent and have amazing power to exalt and humiliate, resurrect and kill, inspire glorious, worthy deeds and at the same time deprive of the meaning of life and interest in everything. Researchers attributed the words magical power to arouse strong feelings and shocks urged to treat them not as particles of speech, but as embryos of holy images like grains of memories almost like living beings. Perhaps that is why in many cultures a person who knows how to speak intelligently, consistently, convincingly and appropriately was respected as well as the smart, judicious speech when every spoken word is weighed and the meaning embedded is heard, this way people judged about mental capabilities and the nature of a man. The growing interest of linguists to the problems of interpersonal verbal communication and interaction between people requires an in-depth study of any form of speech behavior of native speakers and their communicative and pragmatic characteristics.

Keywords: Bashkir languagecomplimentsillocutionpragmaticsspeech act


In Turkology, the speech genre of compliment is poorly understood there is a number of works devoted to speech etiquette as a whole. In Bashkir linguistics a compliment becomes a subject of study only at the end of the 20th and beginning of the 21st centuries. A compliment is studied as a way of cross-cultural communication, to praise certain qualities of a person, to make pleasant things is taken into account as its primary function. Currently there are not enough works revealing the compliment speech genre in Bashkir linguistics. Based on this it can be understood that in the 18-19 centuries this genre was interested first of all as an element of etiquette. In the 21st century a compliment as a means of harmonizing interpersonal interaction is of interest to such fields of science as psychology, sociology, pragmatics, rhetoric, linguoculturology. In domestic linguistics a number of questions were most clearly considered from the point of view of the historical development of speech genres, the lexical corpus of the Bashkir language was studied and analyzed.

Problem Statement

The problem of the analysis of speech units with an orientation to the implementation of a compliment in a dynamic model of religious-institutional communication based on the material of Bashkir dialogical fragments of everyday communication, literary texts of classical Bashkir literature has not been sufficiently studied. In the regulatory aspect speech acts with the aim of implementing a compliment were not the subject of a special study in Russian linguistics. Meanwhile an ever-growing social order to study the pragmatic mechanisms of verbal impact using speech units with the meaning of a compliment explains the necessity of development of an adequate model of effective communication. A description of the units of such impact mechanism will allow us to simulate the linguistic picture of the world of participants in complimentary interaction which can serve as a definite basis for creating an integral theory of impact.

Research Questions

The object of research is the speech act of the compliment of the Bashkir language. A compliment as a speech act is such a complex interaction of the indivisible communicants in the mental space and determining in their linguistic consciousness its essence and positive value for the speaker in speech coordinates “I - here - now”.

The subject of the research is linguistic means (words, phrases, sentences), components of etiquette forms of the Bashkir language as well as analysis of reactions and typology of compliments and means of artistic expression.

Purpose of the Study

The purpose of our study is to identify the national features of the compliment speech act in the Bashkir linguistic culture.

Research Methods

The following research methods were used in the work: descriptive method, associative method, continuous sampling method, methods of selection and systematization, observation and generalization. Huge amount of material was also collected using the method of questioning and interviewing a large audience. Research methods are determined by the specifics of the subject of study and the tasks set. The variety of methods used is primarily due to the complexity of the object under consideration.


The study of compliments in the Turkic languages ​​was carried out in various aspects: cultural, psychological, linguodidactic, linguocultural, communicative-stylistic, pragmatic: Abdullin (2006), Egorova (2007), Gizzatullina (2009), Khairullina (2005), Samsitova (2010), Sarbasheva and Chochkina (2012), Sayakhova (2010), Zamaletdinov (2004), Zaynullin (2009) and others.

In the Altai language scientists of the Gorno-Altai State University Sarbasheva and Chochkina (2012) developed the Altai Speech Etiquette textbook for full-time and part-time students, students of specialty 050302 Native Language and Literature and individuals. This tutorial defines etiquette, it includes requirements that acquire the character of a strictly regulated ceremonial, the observance of which defines a form of behavior.

All compliments are part of speech etiquette and have national and gender characteristics (Abaev, 1948). Nevertheless, documents analyzing the specifics of the compliment in the Bashkir linguistic world image are almost nonexistent.

Due to the geographical location, as well as cultural, trade and economic contacts, both eastern and western features were reflected in the Bashkir language culture. Even now, Bashkir linguistics lacks a comprehensive study of units of speech etiquette. The study of lexical riches and the genetic layer of etiquette expressions is necessary today, because it reflects the historical and social conditions of the people, the development of their national culture. However, the researchers of the Bashkir language repeatedly turn to this topic. The statement of Samsitova (2010) should be mentioned:

The linguistic-cultural direction, which is based on the idea of ​​an interconnected study of language and culture, is one of the promising directions for the modernization of the school course of the Bashkir language as the state and native one and other native languages ​​and the methods of teaching them. Language education is aimed at introducing students to national culture through teaching their native language, which plays an important role not only in shaping the consciousness of a growing person, but also in getting used to it in culture. Teaching a language through culture today seems to be an integral part of the “Bashkir language” subject, the purpose of which is to teach students to use the Bashkir language as a means of communication, a means of understanding the world and themselves in this world. The teaching of the Bashkir language in the educational school has changed and continues to change (along with other subjects of the humanitarian cycle): the content of the subject expands, the organizational and methodological foundations of the lesson undergo changes, priority tasks are the development and upbringing a spiritual and moral personality that respects its country culture and history (p. 4).

Culture penetration into the consciousness of the student occurs in the process of dialogue, in order to make the communicative situation successful for the addressee, it is necessary to use speech acts of influence as sympathy, approval, compliment, etc. In the manual for students of the Bashkir language by Sayakhova (2010), she presents compliments for everyday use in communication, for example, how to compliment someone:

  • Вы (ты) хорошо (прекрасно, великолепно) выглядите (-ишь )[You look good (wonderful, gorgeous)];

  • Вы (ты) умны (красивы, обаятельны) [You are smart (beautiful, charming)];

  • Вы выглядите моложе своих лет [You don't look your age];

  • Ds jltdftntcm c nfrbv drecjv [You dress with such a taste] (p/ 16)/

Studying the Bashkir culture, one cannot ignore the work of academician Zaynullin (2009), according to the scientist an indicator of the successful development of Bashkir linguistics in recent years is the publication of numerous dictionaries, among which the Bashkir-Russian Dictionary, The Explanatory Dictionary of the Bashkir Language, and the Russian-Bashkir Dictionary are of particular importance, bilingual phraseological, terminological and other dictionaries also were published.

Khairullina (2005) studies the problems of reflecting the culture, mentality and psychology of the people in the language and methods of decoding the national-cultural specifics of the linguistic worldimage in the process of communication in a multi-ethnic society, reveals the most important concepts of intercultural communication, interlanguage interaction, ways of forming language consciousness of the people and the linguistic worldimage under the influence of its cultural and historical development and other aspects of the language communication in a multicultural society.

Khabibullina (2012) in her work The Specificity of Interpersonal Communication of the Bashkirs in Conversational Discourse explores the strategy and tactics of the communicative behavior of the Bashkirs.

Before the study of the characteristics of compliments, it would be advisable to dwell on the characteristics of the Bashkir mentality. The main feature of the mentality of the Bashkir people is modesty. This is the way the philosophy of life is reflected in the existence of the spirit of the people - in a living arrangement in relation to labor and material things. The generosity of the Bashkirs is also a reflection of their freedom since it includes power over things, the ability to give them away easily. Wealth does not attract Bashkirs very much, they never openly aspired to prosperity, to external success, therefore they are more inclined to think about the philosophical questions of their existence. Their thoughts are focused on their own inner world than the world of external objects. The calmness and well-being of the Bashkirs is a form of straight state and unlimited freedom (Akbasheva, 1997).

The central figure for compliments is a woman. It is especially important to consider the mentality of the Bashkir women in order to understand the essence of the expressed compliments. The most fully national image of the Bashkir women is revealed by Rakhmatullina (2004) in her study:

The Bashkir woman had great freedom, although there is a well-established idea of ​​the lowered position of all women of the East. Mainly Bashkir marriages were monogamous, and in such families the relations between the sexes were built on equal rights and equal obligations.

Bashkir girl is a horsegirl, an Amazon of the plains, who rode a horse and shot a bow just as well as any man. She is independent in judgments and actions, to some extent emancipated. Bashkir girl was a friend and helper in the harsh life of a nomad cattle breeder; she didn’t cover her face in front of anyone, often she was the initiator of a divorce, more than half of the Bashkir girls of the pre-revolutionary period knew letters. An elderly woman was universally respected in many cases her voice was decisive. (p. 13)

The study found that there was a negative reaction to compliments. The gap can occur at the addressee through the fault of the speaker and due to some characteristics of his own nature, for example, shyness, modesty. One of the speaker’s mistakes being the reason for the negative reaction is the use of compliments containing mockery, irony, ridicule:

  • Ҡалай ҙурайып киткәнһең, әллә миҙал алдыңмы ?

  • Бына һиңә, бисура, мыҫҡыл итәһеңме әллә!

  • (- How did you become a noble or received a medal ?

  • Here, bisura, laughing at me!) (Bairamova, 2009, p. 28).

A compliment containing a negative comparison may also cause a negative reaction:

  • Тауышың саҡ ишетелһә лә, шәп йырлайһың икән!

  • (- Though your voice is quiet, you sing beautifully!) (Bairamova, 2009, p. 33).

The recipient’s uncertainty about the sincerity of the speaker also causes an inadequate response to a compliment:

  • Һеҙҙең күлдәгегеҙ бөтә күлдәктәрҙән дә матурыраҡ... Бик ныҡ килешә!

  • Юҡ, алдашмағыҙ!.. Был осһоҙ күлдәк, нисек инде ул иң матур булһын.

  • (- Your dress is more beautiful than all dresses ... it suits you so much!

  • No, do not lie! .. This is a very cheap dress, it cannot be beautiful) (Abdullin, 1993, p. 63).

The addressee may begin to dispute the compliment, guided by the idea of ​​modesty. The next reason is the inappropriate compliment in a particular situation. And finally the antipathy of the addressee to the speaker also leads to a negative reaction.

The addressee and the addresser are equal in the communication process and for the reason that the addressee “is free to accept or reject the program offered to him, to surrender or to resist, to agree or object, to make a concession or to go on the offensive, to fulfill the request or refuse” (Arutyunova, 1998, p. 176).

The compliment speech act can be expressed by the speaker in various forms. The form of compliment is often determined by the speech situation (approval, greeting, farewell, sympathy, request, congratulation, etc.) and the intentions of the addresser. By the speech situation we understand the situation when speech etiquette exists, this is a situation of direct communication limited by the pragmatic coordinates “I - you - here – now” that organize the core of the language units field of speech etiquette. Depending on the speech situation, the addresser chooses one or another compliment structure according to the content. The compliments are to be accepted with gratitude, an expression of joy and a compliment in return. However we also met with other reactions to compliments in the Bashkir linguistic culture. The main types of reactions of respondents are as follows:

  • gratitude:

  • Һин иң матур , хатта башҡа һүҙ таба алмайым (You are the most beautiful, I can’t even find other words).

  • Рәхмәт, бәғерем (Thank you dear).

The recipient’s response may also contain an expression of joy, pleasure from the received compliment, for example:

  • Һеҙ һандуғас кеүек һайрайһығыҙ (You sing as a nightingale).

  • Ундай һүҙҙәрҙе ишетеүе ныҡ рәхәт (I’m pleased to hear that).

The recipient’s response may contain a return compliment, for example:

  • Мин дә һеҙҙең турала шулай тип әйтә алам (I can say the same about you).

  • Һеҙ ҙә шундай һәләттәргә эйә (You have the same talent).

In order to identify the attitude towards the compliment of the Bashkir people, we conducted an associative survey, the analysis of these data resulted in certain conclusions.

A total of 200 people were interviewed, representatives of the youth of the Bashkir people.

The results of the data analysis are given in table 01 .

Table 1 -
See Full Size >

It was revealed that in the Bashkir language most of the compliments evaluate professionalism or certain abilities which is 26% of all recorded compliments. In the Bashkir linguistic world image, the textual dominant of many poems is compliments praising all the good qualities of a Bashkir girl:

Аҡҡошмо ни күлдә, йөҙөп бейей

Киң сәхнәлә башҡорт һылыуы ;

Ах, оялсан йылмайыуы аша

Керпектәрен һирпеп ҡуйыуы !

Моң түгелә , тылсым нур һибелә

Бармаҡ остарынан, йөҙөнән ;

Ут-осҡондар осоп сығыр кеүек

Тыпырлатып баҫҡан эҙенән.

Нәзәкәтле, тыйнаҡ булмышына

Йәшеренгән эске ғорурлыҡ ;

Башҡорт ҡыҙы ғәмле , сәмле бөгөн,

Ил яҙмышы-уның ҡулында.

Киләсәкте ҡурсып, һаҡлап тора

Халҡым сәңгелдәге янында (Yunisova, 2003, p. 23).

The second place is taken by compliments that evaluate the internal, moral qualities of a person (20%).

Addressing someone with a compliment always contains an important etiquette meaning. It must be remembered that no etiquette means appears in speech completely independently, separately from others. To give a compliment does not mean to make your statement benevolent. If intonation or some other verbal or non-verbal aspects of behavior have a meaning contrary to this formula.


Thus having examined the attitude towards compliments in the Bashkir linguistic culture we conducted a survey. 200 people of different age categories were interviewed, after which a statistical table was compiled. According to the results, it was revealed that the Bashkirs most of all say compliments that evaluate professionalism or certain abilities, as well as compliments that evaluate personality and moral qualities. It was also revealed that a compliment in the Bashkir discourse is one of the types of illocutionary acts, the purpose of which is the speaker’s desire to please an interlocutor, emphasizing his personal characteristics, mental abilities, and skills. The compliment refers to expressive speech acts with the aim of expressing the psychological state of the addresser.


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Samsitova, L., Khuramshina, A., Tagirova, S., & Khabibullina, Z. (2020). Compliment Speech Genre In Bashkir Discourse. In I. Murzina (Ed.), Humanistic Practice in Education in a Postmodern Age, vol 93. European Proceedings of Social and Behavioural Sciences (pp. 838-845). European Publisher.