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A corpus-driven analysis of repair in a professional ELF meeting: Not 'letting it pass'

Tsuchiya, Keiko and Handford, Michael 2014. A corpus-driven analysis of repair in a professional ELF meeting: Not 'letting it pass'. Journal of Pragmatics 64 , pp. 117-131. 10.1016/j.pragma.2014.02.004

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The current study examines turn-taking in a multiparty professional ELF meeting from a bridge-building project in South Asia, using a corpus-assisted discourse analysis. The results show that two of the 15 participants, the Chair and the design consultant, spoke most in the meeting. The Chair took relatively shorter speaker turns, for instance cutting in the conversation and giving corrections or suggestions. We term this discursive practice ‘not let it pass’, in contrast to Firth's (1996) concept of ‘let it pass’, a widely used practice in his business ELF data and other business ELF research. The occurrences of ‘not let it pass’, encompassing other-repair and other-reformulation, practices are analysed in relation to the unfolding discourse, the participants’ goals, and the dynamics of their inter/intra-group relationships. Repair interactions are often observed between members of different institutional groups and nationalities, whereas reformulation interactions were mainly initiated by the Chair with intra-group members. From retrospective interviews, it was clear that a core motivation for the Chair's use of such discursive practices was the comprehension of the audience, rather than the inherent markedness of the message itself. Furthermore, repair fulfils transactional and interpersonal goals, but was not directed at problems of acceptability.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: English, Communication and Philosophy
Publisher: Elsevier
ISSN: 0378-2166
Funders: Japan Society for the Promotion of Science
Date of Acceptance: 10 February 2014
Last Modified: 06 May 2020 10:46

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