The social organisation of news interview interaction
This thesis describes and analyses aspects of the social organisation of British news interview interaction. After a review of the sociological literature on the British news interview in Chapter 1, and a discussion of the evolution of news interviewing in Britain in Chapter 2, Chapter 3 argues that conversation analysis provides the appropriate analytical framework for the study of all forms of naturally occurring interaction. Using the techniques of conversation analysis, the next three chapters then focus on thtee central domains of news interview conduct: the organisation of turn-taking, the organisation of topic, and the organisation of disagreement. Chapter 4 proposes (i) that the news interview turn-taking system operates through a simple form of turn-type pre-allocation, and (ii) that this accounts for a range of systematic differences between news interviews and mundane conversation. Chapter 5 first explicates same of the types of work that interviewers accomplish through the production of questions which maintain or pursue the topical focus of preceding turns and sequences. It then examines same of the procedures which interviewees recurrently use in order to shift the focus of their talk away from the topical agendas which interviewers' questions establish for their turns. Chapter 6, describes how the patterning of disagreements in news interviews differs from that of disagreements in ordinary talk. In so doing, it argues that the fact that the organisation of disagreements in news interviews differs from that in conversation is largely a product of considerations which arise due to the turn-type pre-allocated character of news interview interaction. Finally, Chapter 7 explores the relationship of same of the features described in Chapters 4-6 to the background legal, institutional and other normative constraints on news interviewer/ee conduct.