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Conversational Repair and Human Understanding
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Book description

Humans are imperfect, and problems of speaking, hearing and understanding are pervasive in ordinary interaction. This book examines the way we 'repair' and correct such problems as they arise in conversation and other forms of human interaction. The first book-length study of this topic, it brings together a team of scholars from the fields of anthropology, communication, linguistics and sociology to explore how speakers address problems in their own talk and that of others, and how the practices of repair are interwoven with non-verbal aspects of communication such as gaze and gesture, across a variety of languages. Specific chapters highlight intersections between repair and epistemics, repair and turn construction, and repair and action formation. Aimed at researchers and students in sociolinguistics, speech communication, conversation analysis and the broader human and social sciences to which they contribute - anthropology, linguistics, psychology and sociology - this book provides a state-of-the-art review of conversational repair, while charting new directions for future study.

Reviews

'Repair is absolutely central to any analysis of language and social life as self-organizing natural systems. Here, major scholars insightfully demonstrate repair’s relevance to action formation, human understanding and language diversity. A central resource!'

Charles Goodwin - University of California, Los Angeles

‘… breaks new ground in our understanding of human interaction, and of conversational repair in particular. Essential reading for anyone analysing talk and interaction.’

Celia Kitzinger - University of York

'Conversational repair has been a classic research topic in conversation analysis, and the present volume counts as one of the best collections of studies on this topic … Conversational Repair and Human Understanding is a new classic of conversational repair research.'

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