Published online by Cambridge University Press: 05 November 2011
This book arises from a series of collaborative efforts that began in 2003 as an international project on affiliation in social interaction led by Anna Lindström: “Language and social action: a comparative study of affiliation and disaffiliation across national communities and institutional contexts.” That project resulted in, among other things, the creation of a research network of conversation analysts focusing on what has been emerging as a new and particularly significant dimension of talk-in-interaction – namely the displays of and negotiations concerning participants' epistemic status relative to one another. The turn to epistemics was a natural extension of the prior interest in affiliation. We will argue in this book that to understand affiliation – and indeed cooperation more generally – we must understand how interactants manage the domain of knowledge. The process leading to this volume included four workshops: two in Aarhus, Denmark; one in Lyon, France; and one in Nijmegen, the Netherlands – each of which substantively shaped not only the individual contributions but also our collective thinking about the domain as a whole. For this reason we express gratitude to our fellow contributors who inspired and intensively discussed each chapter of this book over the course of its development. It is for this reason too that, although the introduction was formally written by the editors, it represents a thought process that all contributors were part of.
We dedicate this book to Gail Jefferson and her legacy.