Workplace Experiences Of Women In Australia Essay


Discuss About The Workplace Experiences Of Women In Australia.



The paper is aimed at investigating the changes in the speech act of complaint in a migration context of Italians, Anglo- Italians and Italo-Australians. In the introduction section the author presents background information forming basis for his research. Rubino mentions that not much attention has been given to pragmatic transfer in language from the host to the migrant language (Rubino, 2011). The author further continues to justify why there has been much attention on the impact of the communicative norms of migrant language on the way the migrants tend to use the host language. It was evident that it is problematic to study the effect of host language on pragmatics of management language thus necessitating the current study. However, it was difficult for the author to carry out the study in the country of migrant since it has been reported that effective analysis of pragmatic changes behavior of migrants can be effectively studied when the interactions are conducted in home country of a person rather than in the migration context (Mahler & Pessar, 2006).

The interaction among the native and migrants usually affect communication process and in some instances causes prejudice and wrong interpretation of massages causing conflict (Ting-Toomey & Chung, 2005). This is attributed to the choice of words used in the context discourses. The gap identifies by the author is the lack of information regarding handling of complaints in a cross-cultural perspective. This is because Australia is having great language diversity with people from different parts of the world working or visiting for business or tourism activities (Syed & Pio, 2010). This study particularly explores complaints realized by Anglo-Australians and Italians living in Australia and compares it with similar context by Italians living in Italy.


The author adopted open role play to explore the speech act of complaint. The research participants included only the adults where 10 individuals were picked from each group of the Anglo-Australians, Italo-Australians and Italians. The partners were required to act under nine situations involving complaint where one partner played role of complainer and the other complainee. The focus of the study being on the Italo-Austalian context, the author excluded the recent migrants from Italy who have not stayed in Australia for more than 20 years when selecting Italo-Australian participants. However, such migrants were required to be native Italians and having high degree of familiarity the Italian context. Thus the 10 Italo-Australians who met the said criteria was recruited by snowball approach and were found to be having age ranging between 40 and 66 and had at least secondary education qualification. The three role plays were analyzed with the first one being rock music where complainer complains to new neighbor who plays loud rock music till late into the night. The repair was achieved when addressee lowers music. The second situation involved parking spot where complainer addresses the driver who took space he/she has been waiting for; the repair was achieved when driver vacates the spot. Finally, the third situation involved an accident where the addressee failed to follow traffic lights rules thus causing car accident to the complainer. The repair was achieved when complaineee accepts responsibility and agree to formalize the matter with the police. The sub acts arising from the complaints was then analyzed and presented in tables as discussed below.

Results, discussion and conclusions

The author found out that the Australians were the most successful in obtaining repair followed by Italians and Italo-Australians the least. However, Italo-Australians achieved highest positive resolution in the rock music scene. Interestingly, some study participants were not sure how to handle resolution in the situation presented as reported in previous studies (Gal, 2006). Furthermore, the Italo-Australians were found to be dominating in expressing the complaint where they preferred complaining explicitly and forcefully (Rubino, 2011). Similarly, the Italo-Australians resorted to supportive acts to substantiate their complaints and help in mitigating through disarmers. The Australians just like Italo-Australians also expressed their compliant explicitly however they were least conflictual as they used high number of supportive acts to substantiate their complaints. The Italians on the other hand did not prefer complaining openly as to they chose to leave the complaint implicit and chose directive acts. The Italians used mostly the least conflictual acts when presented with conflicting situations. The most conflictual acts during the study were accusing behavior or blaming the person directly. In relation to asking for the repair, the Italo Australins were found to be the most dominant in asking for the repair explicitly than the other groups. They used forceful terms and non-conflictual acts when asking for the repair. In conclusion, the Italo-Australins were found to have maintained pragmatic competence of native though they displayed influence of Anglo-Australian norms.


In the introduction section the author admits that studying pragmatic languages is challenging task that need good control of data collection and analysis procedures to provide reliable information of the research to the audience. The methodology section should allow the author to closely follow how the research was conducted and one should be able to repeat same procedure elsewhere and get consistency in results (Peffers et al., 2007). The author however, just mentions theoretical framework and suggest that method used in current study has been described in other studies by Rubino and Bettoni. I feel it would have been better for Rubion (2011) to describe procedures of recruiting participants in the paper to save auditing time required to seek further information elsewhere. Similarly, the author did not clearly explain how the location of the study might have affected the study since Italians who are the major interest in the study were subjected to conflicting situation in Australia. Previous studies have shown that people may act in certain way in foreign country to minimize conflict as they would when in their mother country (Erdal & Oeppen, 2013). With this regard I would raise an important question as to whether the Italians and Italo-Australians could have acted the same way when presented with similar situations in Italy.

With regard to presentation of background information, there was need for the author to provide more literature on previous studies relating current study. The author, in the introduction section mentions that the way migrants speak host language have significant implications on the image they project of themselves with regard to attitude that interactions can foster in native population. It has been reported that the social context particularly moral and ethics guidelines significantly influence interactions among people having different cultural backgrounds (Guttman & Salmon, 2004). The author could have highlighted more on the ethical backgrounds of the study groups especially what is considered morally acceptable or unacceptable in Italy and Australia. This is because people tend to make decision based on their morals when presented with conflicting situation. Finally, the author need to have identified challenges during research and recommend need for future further studies.


Erdal, M. B., & Oeppen, C. (2013). Migrant balancing acts: understanding the interactions between integration and transnationalism. Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies, 39(6), 867-884.

Gal, S. (2006). Migration, minorities and multilingualism: Language ideologies in Europe. In Language Ideologies, Policies and Practices (pp. 13-27). Palgrave Macmillan, London.

Guttman, N., & Salmon, C. T. (2004). Guilt, fear, stigma and knowledge gaps: ethical issues in public health communication interventions. Bioethics, 18(6), 531-552.

Mahler, S. J., & Pessar, P. R. (2006). Gender matters: Ethnographers bring gender from the periphery toward the core of migration studies. International migration review, 40(1), 27-63.

Peffers, K., Tuunanen, T., Rothenberger, M. A., & Chatterjee, S. (2007). A design science research methodology for information systems research. Journal of management information systems, 24(3), 45-77.

Rubino, A. (2011). Changes in the Speech Act of Complaint in a Migration Context: Italo-Australians vs Italians and Anglo-Australians. Italica, 88(1), 115-139.

Syed, J., & Pio, E. (2010). Veiled diversity? Workplace experiences of Muslim women in Australia. Asia Pacific Journal of Management, 27(1), 115-137.

Ting-Toomey, S., & Chung, L. C. (2005). Understanding intercultural communication. New York: Oxford University Press.

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