Gumperz And Goffman's Theory Of Interactional Sociolinguistics

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1.6.2: Interactional sociolinguistics: Gumperz and Goffman developed interactional sociolinguistics view of discourse from the perspective of sociology and anthropology- "as a social interaction in which the emergent construction of meaning is facilitated by the use of language". (Schiffin 134) Gumperz argue that social and cultural forces affect language and cognition and therefore "a general theory of communication which integrates what we know about grammar, culture and interactive conventions into a single overall frame work of concepts and analytical procedures" (Gumperz, Discourse Strategies) is needed for discourse analysis. Interactional sociolinguistics, the term and the perspective are grounded in work of John Gumperz. Interactional sociolinguistics as an approach to Discourse Analysis is concerned with how speakers signal and interpret meaning in social interaction. This approach helps the analysts to interpret what participants intend to convey in everyday communication. The development of Interactional sociolinguistics is found in an anthropological context of cross-cultural comparison. The work which provided a basis for interactional sociolinguistics focused largely on contexts of intercultural miscommunication. This perspective has been extended to cross-gender communication, by most notably Deborah Tannen (1990), and it has also been applied to the performance of social identity through talk. The framework can be applied to any interaction, however, and

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