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Preference and the conversation analytic endeavor

Item Summary Bilmes, Jack 2019-01-09T19:17:27Z 2019-01-09T19:17:27Z 2014
dc.identifier.citation Journal of Pragmatics 64 (2014) 52--71
dc.description.abstract Conversation analysis (CA), as currently practiced, comprises two approaches -- action-oriented and meaning-oriented. I use CA treatments of ‘preference’ as a case in point. In current discussions of preference, the emphasis is on action, on what interactants do. Action is grounded in psychological mechanisms, which CA is not equipped to handle. So discussions of preference turn toward a more quantified notion of what people usually do. I argue that attempts at quantification raise problems that are not soluble within the confines of CA methodology. I then turn to the broadest and most discussed preference, the supposed preference for agreement, arguing that it is context sensitive in ways that produce multiple exceptions. Using a gross, transcontextual average, even if that were possible, would be unenlightening. I focus, using an extended example, on one of the exceptions, the case of accusations. I suggest that we drop the action- oriented approach and attend instead to meaning. This approach is grounded in a conception of evidence which does not rely on either falsification criteria or statistical measures. Its generalizations pertain not to what interactants normally do but to the resources they have and the methods they employ in producing meaning and social organization.
dc.language.iso en-US
dc.publisher Elsevier
dc.subject Conversation analysis
dc.subject Preference
dc.subject.lcsh Quantification
dc.subject.lcsh Accusation
dc.subject.lcsh Proof
dc.title Preference and the conversation analytic endeavor
dc.type Article
dc.type.dcmi Text
prism.publicationname Journal of Pragmatics
prism.volume 64
prism.startingpage 52
prism.endingpage 71
Appears in Collections: Jack Bilmes

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