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Title: Interaction, identity & social class
Author: Holmes, Edward J. B.
ISNI:       0000 0004 9351 8852
Awarding Body: University of York
Current Institution: University of York
Date of Award: 2019
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Social class is a longstanding locus of sociological inquiry. Prior research has investigated the phenomenon in an array of domains through a myriad of methodologies and theoretical perspectives. The heterogeneity that is posed by previous studies empirically and theoretically, however, is predicated upon a homogenous set of epistemological and ontological assumptions. This has resulted in a number of programmatic, enduring omissions. Most notably, research has neglected how social class is conceptualised and made relevant by members in forms of talk-in-interaction. Aligning with the commitments of Ethnomethodology (EM), and using Conversation Analysis (CA) and Membership Categorisation Analysis (MCA) specifically, this thesis addresses this lacuna. Data are composed of ordinary, naturalistic forms of talk-in-interaction conducted synchronously in the English language over the last half-century (n=959). The empirical contributions of this research concern the ontological affordances, formulative possibilities and praxiological functions of two families of interactional practices that occasion the relevance of classed identities recurrently – namely, “membership categorisations” and “place references”. Chapter 4 addresses the former, canvassing the agentic, ontological and intersubjective dimensions of linguistically classed membership categories. Chapter 5 introduces the latter as a resource used to actuate classed identities in a designedly referential and metonymic faculty. Chapter 6 then recovers the activity of “accounting” for which both practices are employed across action-types; specifically, “assessments”, “complaints” and “teases”. The central objective of this thesis thus concerns the “respecification” of social class as a “members’ phenomenon”; one that is made relevant within ordinary instances of talk-in-interaction through a stable set of interactional practices in order to accomplish a diverse range of practical tasks. The thesis concludes with a review of several candidate lines of analysis for future EM/(M)CA inquiry that are anticipated by the findings of this research uniquely.
Supervisor: Toerien, Merran ; Lawler, Steph Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available