Discourse Analysis

MoWe 3:00PM - 4:15PM / 249 Cathedral of Learning / CRN 29865
How do people manage to carry on coherent conversations, even though the ‘rules’ aren’t specified ahead of time?
How do we manage to understand what someone means even when it is not explicitly said?
How do people create their social identities in interaction?
How do everyday ways of talking help to reinforce and create power imbalances between people, and among groups of people in society?
How do conversational narratives help create social identities and power relations?
These are the main questions we will consider in this course. Students will acquire the tools for doing discourse analysis, and then use those tools to understand how people use language in interactions to create identities. Along the way, we will also consider how interactions in other modes such as writing and electronic media are different and similar to spoken interaction.
Students will record and transcribe a short interaction, which will then be used as the basis for short papers in which students will practice discourse analytic techniques and explore specific issues related to discourse. A course paper will require students to research one area of their choosing in depth and apply it to some interactional data.

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Scott Kiesling

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Course Category

Category D: Designated Courses

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