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Dsicourse and Pragmatics Conversation Analysis. Doing ‘Being Ordinary’ Harold Garfinkle ‘Ethnomethodology’ How do people make interaction orderly? How.

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Presentation on theme: "Dsicourse and Pragmatics Conversation Analysis. Doing ‘Being Ordinary’ Harold Garfinkle ‘Ethnomethodology’ How do people make interaction orderly? How."— Presentation transcript:

1 Dsicourse and Pragmatics Conversation Analysis

2 Doing ‘Being Ordinary’ Harold Garfinkle ‘Ethnomethodology’ How do people make interaction orderly? How do people make sense of interaction? Studying people’s actions on their own terms rather than with reference to a theory

3 Conversation Analysis Developed in the 1960’s by Sacks, Schegloff and Jefferson Study of telephone conversations Fine tuned (‘microanalytic’) analysis of the sequential structure of conversations Conversation unfolds ‘one thing after another’ No a priori assumptions Looking for patterns in actual conversations Understanding how people ‘make sense’ of conversations Search for ‘patterns’ and ‘regularities’ in talk

4 Topics in CA How utterances are related to each other (‘adjacency pairs’) Preference organization Turn-taking Topic initiation Feedback Openings and closings Repair

5 Context Contrast with E of S and pragmatics Only valid ‘context’ is the immediate context of the conversation Context is dynamic We create context by what we say and respond to the context other people create by what they say Factors external to the talk is only relevant if participants make it relevant ‘Pure’ conversational data Based only on what participants actually do Close data transcription

6 Transcription Transcription is… A process of selection Driven by analyst's theoretical stance Gail Jefferson Transcription conventions

7 Sample Henry: (a) Y'want a piece of candy? Irene:(b) No.// Zelda:(c) She's on a // diet Deby:(d) // Who's not on a diet Irene: (e) =I'm on a diet. (f) and my mother // buys Zelda: (g) // You're not! Irene: (h)=my // mother buys these mints.= Deby:(i) // Oh yes I// amhhh! Zelda:(j) Oh yeh Irene: (k) The Russel Stouffer mints. (l) I said, 'I don't want any Mom." (m) "Well, I don't want to eat the whole thing." (n) She gives me a tiny piece. (o) I eat it. (p) Then she give me an//other,= Henry:(q) // Was, = Irene: (r) =so I threw it out the window= Henry =there a lot of people?= Irene(s) =I didn't // tell her.= Henry: (t) // Was there= Irene: (u) =She'd kill me.

8 The structure of conversations Openings Initiating exchanges that establish social relations Middle Topic negotiation and development Turn taking mechanics Feedback Closings Pre-closing exchanges Closings Meaning of an utterance depends on stage of conversation ‘How are you?’ ‘Hello’

9 Openings and Closings Conversational ‘rituals’ Vary from culture to culture Closing telephone conversations in Australia and New Zealand

10 Openings Ritualistic openings Utterances have different meanings when they occur at the beginning ‘Hey!’ ‘How are you?’ ‘Have you eaten yet?’ Summons--Answer Greeting--Greeting Often done simultaneously

11 Openings in Telephone Conversations A: Hello. (…) B: Hello. A: oh, hello Anne, what’s up. B: Nothing much. I just had something I wanted to ask you. Summons/Answer Greeting/Greeting

12 Closings FTA Pre-closings Body language Excuses Ritualistic expressions (e.g. ‘good’, ‘ok’) Signal invitation to or willingness to pass on one’s turn Invitation for or offering of ‘unmentioned mentionables’

13 Why it’s so hard to get off the phone (Cameron) From Cameron

14 Adjacency Pairs A pair of utterances in which the first part predicts the second part ‘Conditional Relevance’ Second half is functionally dependent on the first. First is also dependent on the second: Second half provides evidence of how the first half was understood ‘What makes something a request?’ Speech Act Theory vs. CA ‘Preferred Responses’

15 Dispreferred Responses May create implicature A: I’m sorry B: … A: I love you. B: Thanks. Second half of pair is heard as ‘officially absent’

16 Dispreferred Responses May require extra ‘conversational work’ such as ‘delay’, ‘preface’, and/or ‘account’. The ‘work’ involved is What identifies an utterance as ‘preferred’ or ‘dispreferred’’

17 Matching

18 Adjacency Pairs Cultural differences ‘How was your weekend’ Australians and French (Beal 1992)

19 Insertion Sequences A: May I please speak to Rodney? B: May I ask who’s calling? A: Alan. B: Just a minute. I’ll get him. A: Gimme a beer. B: How old are you? A: 21 B: Okay. Coming up. CONDITIONAL RELEVANCE

20 Turn Taking We ‘take turns’ in conversation Turns are negotiated as we go along (conversation is ‘locally managed’) ‘Turn Constructional Units’ ‘Turn Transition Relevance Place’ Choices S nominates next speaker If not, then… Next speaker nominates self If not, then… Current speaker may (but does not have to) continue ‘Accountable’ and ‘non-accountable’ silence ‘Overlaps’ vs. ‘Interruptions’

21 ‘Supportive Interventions’

22 Turn Taking Signaling the end of our turn Adjacency pair structure Nominating another speaker Pausing Falling intonation/pitch Body language (e.g. gaze, body torque)

23 Turn Taking Signaling that we want to keep talking Pausing in the middle of a phrase/clause Looking away Talking louder or maintaining pitch/loudness

24 Turn Taking Special situations have special rules for turn taking Classrooms Meetings Can also be affected by… Topic Cooperativeness Power Distance

25 Topic Management Appropriate and Taboo Topics Rules on who initiates topics How topics are initiated Changing topics

26 Backchannel (Feedback) Verbal feedback Non-verbal feedback Role in maintaining channel (‘focused interaction’) Role in turn taking, topic management Cultural differences

27 Repair Self-repair Other-repair

28 CA and Culture An Argentinean in Sweden (Cameron) Cultures where simultaneous talk is the norm Cultures where extended silence is the norm

29 Talk in institutional settings What special considerations apply that make talk in institutional settings different from casual conversation? Goal oriented Special constraints on allowable contributions Context specific inferential frameworks

30 ‘One rule for one and one for another’

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