Los marcadores bueno y pues
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This study analyzes the dialogues in five Spanish textbooks to identify the discourse markers with the highest frequency and their functions. It also examines the conversation of five native speakers from southern Spain to identify the frequency and uses of the markers bueno and pues in their speech. Results show that in the conversations the most frequent functions of bueno are ‘topic change’, ‘expressing conformity’, and ‘initiating a turn’, whereas for pues they are expressing ‘conditions, consequences or results’, ‘commentary’, ‘resuming a topic’, and ‘initiating a response’. Three uses of bueno and two uses of pues are present in textbooks, but not taught explicitly. For bueno, the most frequent uses shared by the two corpora are ‘topic change’, ‘expressing conformity’, and ‘initiating a new conversational turn’. For pues, they are ‘making a commentary’ and ‘initiating an answer’. These findings suggest that bueno and pues constitute important features of Spanish conversation and thus should be taught in Spanish courses.