Organizing Dialogue, Experience and Knowledge for Complex Problem-Solving

“non-monologic unity”

by • October 28th, 2005

This would be Mikhail Bakhtin, and somehow I’m going to make it clear that interpreters make this happen. Google could only find one reference to this idea, in a paper on the possibilities/problems of cybercommunity/ies, Digital Waco.
Here’s what Morson & Emerson say in their intellectual biography, Creation of a Prosaics:

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abduction (more on method)

by • September 18th, 2005

Because part of my funding for the EuroParl interpreter research came from anthropology, there’s been a big push to do ethnography. I’ve really only collected discourse at this stage, which I will look at through a critical discourse lens because I’m interested in language hierarchies and linguistic inequality. There is plenty of evidence of these things in EuroParl interpreters’ talk about their work and working conditions. Rather than deduction (coming up with an hypothesis based on theory) or induction (making what I find fit some theory), abduction is about invention. It requires applying imagination to generate theory, to come up with categories based on the combination of characteristics discovered (the expected and the unexpected). My next task is to distinguish between what Agar calls rich points (the surprises) and those things that meshed with my expectations.

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degrees of realism and consistency

by • July 21st, 2005

I’m more than halfway through Goffman’s Frame Analysis, subtitled “An Essay on the Organization of Experience” (described by Brian as “not an essay, that’s a f*cking tome!”). Robin’s recommendation was right on target. (As was the other text by Deborah Tannen, Framing in Discourse.)
Goffman uses the obvious changes in stage props over time as evidence to “alert us to the expectation that framing does not so much introduce restrictions on what can be meaningful as it … open[s] up variability” (emphasis added, 238). Here I am chafing against the limits when the natural capacity to adjust to all manner of framings and transformations indicates possibility! “Differently put, persons seem to have a very fundamental capacity to accept changes in organizational premises which, once made, render a whole strip of activity different from what it is modeled on and yet somehow meaningful . . .” (238). To wit, teaching “experientially” instead of traditionally, and the capacity of Jeff at UNH to apply communication theory in practice vs the inability of others to recognize the possibility of recasting teaching in an as yet meaningful way. Others (going unnamed to protect the innocent and the guilty) mistrust:

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coincidence?!!!

by • June 9th, 2005

OHMYGOSH Jan Blommaert is only a short train ride away at Ghent University!

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“How do you move your thinking?”

by • June 4th, 2005

I told my host family last night that I’d been able to move my thinking forward in terms of the kinds of questions to ask interpreters going into the week in Strasbourg. Helena asked how. It’s actually still a bit vague in my own mind, so perhaps I can write out loud and gain clarity. I’ll use Van Manen as my reference point, because the notion of phenomenology – interpreter’s consciousness and their awareness of self/other consciousness – is a move that the discourse enables. (This reflective writing doubles as a note-taking exercise clarifying my phenomenological research methodology.)

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More on methodology and theory

by • May 31st, 2005

I

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“A language that sings the world”

by • May 30th, 2005

I was asked by one interpreter if there was a difference between what I’m trying to do with my research and what journalists do when they research and publish stories. Many of the points I considered possible distinctions were persuasively argued as not that different, but the one point which seemed most different is the notion of participation in the writing/publication process.
I started reading this book Leda loaned me, Researching Lived Experience by Max Van Manen, which describes the phenomenological angle in terms that reflect my ontology. Van Manen says, “phenomenology attempts to explicate the meanings as we live them in our everyday existence, our lifeworld” (11).

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metonymy

by • March 20th, 2005

Dang. Have I had metonymy all wrong? Hall describes is a linguistic term in which a part is substituted for the whole inadequately because, as a one-sided or single moment it can never provide or capture a process (or object or event or . . . ) holistically, in all its dimensions, moments, and aspects.
I’ve been considering it alternatively as a representation or symbol in which the whole enacts itself within the part.

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seeing and looking

by • February 26th, 2005

Briankle assigned us a terrific book: Stealing the Mona Lisa: What Art Stops Us From Seeing, by Darian Leader. (Another pro and a con critique are posted here, scroll down.)
I’m interested in the way Leader describes the difference between looking and seeing. One may look and not see. Simply, this is perceptually similar to hearing but not listening, however Leader is really dealing with consciousness and what it means to know that one is being looked at without ever knowing for sure what (who?) is being seen.

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discourses in tension?

by • January 28th, 2005

I had a great day working today. My teammate was (is!) awesome. 🙂 We had the best conversation at lunch, about her workshop on discretion (which gets as much of a plug as I can give it), and a quasi-update on where I am with the research on role.
Our conversation was fascinating because it was going along just fine, full of investigatory questions and comments, and then it got tense! Why? It was right before we had to get back to work…..and then didn’t come up again….but was really on my mind. Why? Was I presenting my hypotheses and tentative findings in an ethnocentric or oppressive way? It worked out that we walked to our cars together, and the moment arose for me to ask if she’d felt the conversation get tense. (Maybe it was just me?) Yes, she had noticed! And she thought it was about something she was doing! Being too questioning or too …. something (I can’t recall her word – persistent, maybe).

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