3rd Meeting (2013)

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The Language and Social Interaction Working Group (LANSI)


Third Meeting of the Language and Social Interaction Working Group (LANSI)

(All presentations take place in Grace Dodge Hall 179)


Friday, October 18, 2013

8:00 – 8:30

Registration and Welcome to the Conference

8:30 – 8:55

Chatting about the Super Bowl in Chinese

Abby Dobs

Qian Wu

Rebecca Zoshak

Pennsylvania State University

This paper examines the development of relational identity (RID) (Boxer and Cortes-Conde, 1997, 2000) in a beginning-level Chinese foreign language classroom. Close analysis of the classroom interaction reveals the interactional practices teachers and students employ to foster RID and enhance language learning in a traditional teacher-fronted L2 classroom.

9:00 – 9:25

Conflicting Demonstrations of Understanding in the Interactions of Individuals with Frontotemporal Dementia: Considering Cognitive Resources and their Role in Conversation

Lisa Mikesell

Rutgers University

Based on video ethnographic data of individuals with frontotemporal dementia (FTD) interacting with carers and ethnographers, I use conversation analysis to examine interactions when people with FTD demonstrate understandings that conflict with their just prior claims/displays of understandings. Examining these breakdowns enables insights about cognitive resources for conversation.

9:30 – 9:55

“I would suggest you tell this ^^^ to your doctor”:

Intertextuality and Narrative Problem-Solving in an Online Discussion about Weight-Loss

Cynthia Gordon

Syracuse University

Using computer-mediated discourse analysis, I examine an online weight-loss discussion board thread stemming from one poster’s depiction of a doctor’s unwelcome comment about her weight. Through intertextual linking strategies--questions, reframing, quotation marks, the board’s quotation function, and pointing--posters co-construct a “small story” to solve the original poster’s problem.

9:55 – 10:10

Coffee/Tea Break (GDH 177)

10:10 – 10:35

Going Off-Script:

The Dialogic Nature of the Truth and Reconciliation Hearings

Alla Tovares 

Howard University

By applying notions of framing and dialogicality to the instances when testifiers went off-script during Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC) hearings, I demonstrate how testifiers used various linguistic strategies to challenge TRC’s framing of the events and thus added their voices to the dialogic process of creating “discourse of reconciliation.”

10:40 – 11:05

Doing Friendship: Storytelling in L1-L2 English Conversation

Jean Wong

The College of New Jersey 

I juxtapose two L1-L2 storytellings in which the teller, an L2 user, remains constant. Recipients’ respective responses display affiliation and empathy (or not), revealing how storytelling and friendship are co-constructed locally in situ. Implications regarding what counts as L2 interactional competence are addressed.

11:10 – 12:10


Requests: The Grammar of Responsive Actions

Sandra Thompson

University of California, Santa Barbara

12:10 – 2:10

Lunch in the Neighborhood

2:10 – 2:35

Subjectivity in Autistic Language:

A Reappraisal of Pronoun Avoidance and Reversal

Laura Sterponi

Jennifer Shankey

Kenton de Kirby

UC Berkeley

In this paper we examine a prototypical feature of autistic language: pronoun avoidance and reversal. We challenge the traditional interpretation of the phenomenon as manifestation of impaired interpersonal perspective-taking and demonstrate that pronoun reversal/avoidance is related to specific conversational frames and can serve as means of experiencing the interlocutor’s stance and orientation.

2:40 – 3:05

Aligning and Disaligning through Confirmation:

Uses of stimmtrichtig, and eben in German

Emma Betz

University of Waterloo

This paper investigates three confirmation tokens in German: stimmt, eben, and richtig. Confirmation is not a fundamentally aligning action: Speakers differentiate between confirming and aligning, and the choice of response token communicates additional sequential and epistemic information. Thus, speakers negotiate the terms of agreement from second position though lexicogrammatical choices.

3:10 – 3:35


Nancy Boblett

Teachers College, Columbia University

This talk describes a practice called gesture-echo, the repetition of a previously performed gesture which links the lexical affiliates of the original and its echo. The gesture-echo 1) disambiguates its lexical affiliate and 2) serves as visual shorthand, thus moving the interaction forward quickly and efficiently.

3:35 – 3:50

Coffee/Tea Break (GDH 177)

3:50 – 4:15

Conflicted Stance Practices Toward Linguistic Alternatives in the Yiddish Metalinguistic Community

Netta Avineri

Monterey Institute of International Studies

This ethnographic research examines heritage language socialization practices in the secular Yiddish “metalinguistic community”, focusing on how instructors and students display conflicted stance toward linguistic alternatives (source languages, standard and non-standard varieties). It demonstrates how languages themselves are deployed as objects in the projects of constructing past and present communities.

4:20 – 4:45

Traversing Epistemic Landscapes within a PBL Tutorial Meeting

Anna Cianciolo

 Timothy Koschmann

Southern Illinois University School of Medicine

The present analysis explores how group discussion in a problem-based learning tutorial following individual, self-directed learning is organized, specifically how epistemic stance and status with regard to the discussion topic are differentially enacted by the participants in the presence and absence of the tutor.

4:50 – 5:15

The Interactional Unfolding of Smiles in Instructed Learning Settings

Olcay Sert,  Hacettepe University, Turkey

Christine Jacknick, Borough of Manhattan Community College, CUNY

In this conversation-analytic study, we argue that smiles, like laughter, can index interactional trouble in English language classroom talk. Based on international comparative data, we show how teachers orient to student smiles as an indication of ‘insufficient knowledge,’ and discuss how teachers use non-verbal cues as indicators of epistemic status.

5:15 – 6:15



Saturday, October 19, 2013

8:30 - 8:55

Negotiating Advice and Information Requests: A Case from a Middle-School Classroom

Briana Ronan

Teachers College, Columbia University

In this case study I examine how two middle-schoolers produce and respond to peer solicitations for advice/information during a writing activity. Through careful examination of the interaction, I demonstrate how the students’ desire for advice is complicated by their peer relationship and academic identities.

9:00 – 9:25

Longitudinal Change in Teacher Trainees' Deployment of Spatial Positioning

David Aline

Yuri Hosoda

Kanagawa University

We examine spatial positioning as a teacher trainee resource and its longitudinal change as trainees establish themselves in home position at front center, claiming these changes demonstrate growth in trainees' embodied competence in managing classroom interaction. The findings contribute to understanding of development of novice teachers' utilization of nonverbal resources.

9:30 – 9:55

Disrupted Discourse Cohesion and Distributed Responsibility in Face-to-Face Interactions with Individuals Diagnosed with Schizophrenia

Adrienne Isaac, , UCLA

Elizabeth Bromley, UCLA

Lisa Mikesell, School of Communication and Information, Rutgers University

This research investigates how individuals with schizophrenia and their interlocutors negotiate disruptions in discourse cohesion. Results of this research highlight the tension between the communication of ideas and the maintenance of relationships in conversation, such that politeness takes precedence after measures taken to secure mutual understanding have been exhausted.

9:55 – 10:10

Coffee/Tea Break (GDH 177)

10:10 – 10:35

Multimodal and Multilingual Literacy Practices: Children’s Play Enactments of Bookreading in a Bilingual U.S. Preschool

Amy Kyratzis

University of California, Santa Barbara

Video examples of play enactments of reading among peers were drawn from a larger ethnographic study conducted in a bilingual Spanish-English preschool. Examples illustrate children using multimodal resources in “building in concert with one another the actions that define” (C. Goodwin 2000) literate action.

10:40 – 11:05

The Construction of Professionalism in Experience-Sharing at the General Practitioner's Training

Mario Veen

Keun Sliedrecht

Erasmus University Medical Center Rotterdam, The Netherlands

This study examines transcribed video data of an educational method used in GP training in the Netherlands, in which GPs in training share experiences from practice with each other. The aim of the study is to uncover how GPs design their stories in this specific educational context.

11:10 – 11:35

“Now it says here…”:

The Use of Medical and Legal Documents in the Construction of Turn Design

Jeffrey Good

 Syracuse University

This paper analyzes the use of paper and electronic documents as a source of information that helps in the construction of turns at talk in interaction. The use of medical records by physicians to retrieve information about a patient and his/her condition is compared with the use of paperwork (depositions, notes, etc.) in legal interaction.

11:40 – 12:40


Categorization and Cultural Mediation in Autobiographic Research Interviews

Gabriele Kasper

University of Hawaii

12:40 – 2:15

Lunch in the Neighborhood

2:15 – 2:40

“Because We Don’t Know Math”: Epistemic Stance Accretion and Expert Identity in an Undergraduate Calculus Course

Rachel Cranfill

University of California, Santa Barbara

Using ethnographic data collected on math and science undergraduates’ interactions, this paper shows how students construct expert identities through the accretion of epistemic stances. Through the accumulation of previous and current stancetaking, students’ identities as expert are interactionally formed. This paper argues that habitual stances help inform interactional analyses.

2:45 – 3:10

Client Narratives as First and Second Stories in the Treatment of Trauma

Alan Zemel, University at Albany

Frances Yoeli, Life Energy Center

Tessa Prattos, International Trauma Center

This analysis demonstrates how client memory reports in conjunction with bilateral sensory stimulation in Intensive Integrated Reprocessing Therapy are used to reduce the pathological effects of trauma. We use conversation analytic methods to examine how clients treat their own reports as first and second stories that organize their understandings as reportable events.

3:15 – 3:40

“Your parents divorced? Very good!”:

Occasioning Identities in Language-Learning Talk

Piibi-Kai Kivik

Indiana University

Three consecutive stories by language learners and their instructor in a conversation-for-learning setting are analyzed using sequential analysis and MCA. Participants do complicated identity-work by switching between the interactional frames of mundane conversation and language pedagogy. Language learning activities bridge the institutional nature of the event and the personal story-telling.

3:40 – 3:55

Coffee/Tea Break (GDH 177)

3:55 – 4:20

“That’s a good question”:

Demonstrating Interactional Competence in the ITA TEACH Test

Santoi Wagner

University of Pennsylvania

This study examines how international teaching assistants demonstrate their language and teaching competency in panel-rated teaching simulations. The data suggest a complex tension between the demonstration of appropriate pedagogic language/behavior and the pursuit of audience understanding of content.

4:25 – 4:50

Contesting Hydrofracking during an Inter-Governmental Hearing: Accountability in Question-Answer-Assessment Sequences

Richard Buttny

Syracuse University

This study of a hearing on hydrofracking examines how DEC responses do not address the question, but rework it so that it can be answered from the DEC perspective.  Evasive answers are assessed in critical ways, such that the hearing is largely an argument on hydrofracking fitted into a question-answer-assessment format.

4:55 – 5:55


Some Notes on the Sociology of Sequential Analysis

Douglas MacBeth

Ohio State University

5:55 – 6:00



Data Session

Our next data session will take place on Saturday, November 18, from 1-3 pm, in Grace Dodge Hall 279.