Contemporary sociolinguistics : theory, problems, methods by Aleksandr D. Švejcer PDF

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By Aleksandr D. Švejcer

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The ethnomethodologists are not satisfied with a sociometric approach, widely used in modern sociology, inasmuch as, in their view, this approach fails to take into account the relations between the scholars' categories and those intuitive categories which are applied by the members of the community in interpreting the phenomena of their social environment. The focal area of ethnomethodological research is everyday human activity, including verbal communication. As defined by the founder of this trend, Harold Garfinkel, ethnomethodology is concerned with a "study of the rational properties of practical actions as contingent ongoing accomplishments of organized artful practices of everyday life" (Garfìnkel 1971, 309).

In his observations on the communicative behaviour of Indians, speakers of Wishram Chinook, D. Hymes reaches the conclusion that the social norms of that Indian tribe prescribe what the author calls a serious attitude to language, and expectation of undesirable consequencies from its careless use. This fact, among other things, influences the distribution of social situations between verbal and non-verbal communication channels. Characteristically, according to Hymes's observations, the Indians of that tribe do not use language for what B.

Their observations of spontaneous conversations in certain situations merit attention. For instance, in his experimental study of sequencing in conversation openings E. Schegloff discovered that question-answer sequences in certain speech situations, for example, in telephone conversations, are rulegoverned. Schlegloff's experiment demonstrated that a violation of these rules prevents mutual understanding between partners in a communicative event. Thus, for instance, question-answer sequences in a telephone conversation may be as follows: 1) the answering party speaks first (Hello; yeah; Macy's shoe department; Dr.

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Contemporary sociolinguistics : theory, problems, methods by Aleksandr D. Švejcer

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