Back to Page Authors: Vladimir Maevskiy

Keywords: doctor and patient communication, function of politically correct phrases, medical discourse, political correctness

Abstract: This paper examines the implementation features of politically words and phrases in the German and Russian medical discourse. As the material for this research we used German- and Russian-language texts of articles belonging to popular scientific medical discourse. We systematized examples of the use of politically words and phrases. The paper discusses that the main purpose of politically words and phrases is to follow social norms and rules of speech etiquette. The dual nature of politically words and phrases is stressed. On the one hand, politically words and phrases allow avoiding artificial barriers between the doctor and the patient, which may occur due to the lack of knowledge of medical terms by the latte. In addition, politically words and phrases are appropriate during examinations, diagnosis messages and in other situations in order to ensure the psychological comfort of the patient and his family, to relieve partially the stress experienced by patients and to mask the meaning of the message in certain situations. On the other hand, on some occasions doctors use euphemisms in order to hide the real situation. Researchers do not encourage the use of politically words and phrases in communication between doctors and patients since their excessive use during medical consultations entails misunderstanding and can prevent the establishment of a trustful partnership dialogue.