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The Language Hoax

By John H. McWhorter

The Language Hoax "argues that that all humans process life the same way, regardless of their language."


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Language and Development in Africa

By H. Ekkehard Wolff

Language and Development in Africa "discusses the resourcefulness of languages, both local and global, in view of the ongoing transformation of African societies as much as for economic development.. "


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Academic Paper


Title: Organizing a Remote State of Incipient Talk: Push-to-talk mobile
Author: Margaret H. Szymanski
Institution: Palo Alto Research Center
Author: Paul M. Aoki and Allison Woodruff
Institution: Intel Research Berkeley
Linguistic Field: Discourse Analysis
Subject Language: None
Abstract: This study investigates the organization of conversational interaction via push-to-talk mobile radios. Operating like long-range walkie-talkies, the mobile radios mediate a remote state of incipient talk; at the push of a button, speakers can initiate, engage, disengage, and reengage turn-by-turn talk. Eight friends used the mobile radios for one week; 50 of their conversational exchanges were analyzed using conversation analytic methods. The findings describe the contour of their conversational exchanges: how turn-by-turn talk is engaged, sustained, and disengaged. Similar to a continuing state of incipient talk in copresence, opening and closing sequences are rare. Instead, speakers engage turn-by-turn talk by immediately launching the purpose of the call. Speakers disengage turn-by-turn talk by orienting to the relevance of a lapse at sequence completion. Once engaged, the mobile radio system imposes silence between speakers' turns at talk, giving them a resource for managing a remote conversation amid ongoing copresent activities.

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This article appears IN Language in Society Vol. 35, Issue 3, which you can READ on Cambridge's site or on LINGUIST .



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