'What's in a frame?': Single play as collaborative action

Nao, Marion (2012). 'What's in a frame?': Single play as collaborative action. In: Discourse, Communication, Conversation: An Anniversary Conference (DARG & CAMARG), 22-23 Mar 2012, Loughborough University, Loughborough.


The presentation takes a pragmatic approach to a single case analysis of play framing in interaction (Nao 2011). Drawing on Gricean implicature founded on the maxim of quality, or truth (Grice 1975), and metacommunication (Bateson 1986[1955]) as one participant’s signalling of expectations to others, it explores the degree to which its relevance can be seen as collaborative action. A core methodological distinction between the CA and pragmatic analysis of discourse is the foregrounding by the former of demonstrability of relevance to the participants in interaction (Schegloff 1997). This may rely heavily on sequential action as a participant’s response to the preceding turn by another speaker. Pragmatics, on the other hand, may consider relevance inherent to a single speaker utterance through indexicality of reference.

While the two may arguably combine to provide greater insight into what it is that the participants are doing in interaction with one another (Nao 2010), or their ‘framing’ of the episode (Tannen 1979), the present discussion restricts itself primarily to sequentiality of action through the course of an individual speaker’s utterances. It thereby charts the consequentiality of meaning as single play. In this way, it questions to what extent the other participants’ utterances are necessary to inform the analysis of framing.

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