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LINGUIST List 19.2950

Mon Sep 29 2008

Diss: Socioling: Sherman: 'Proselyting in First-Contact Situations'

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        1.    Tamah Sherman, Proselyting in First-Contact Situations


Message 1: Proselyting in First-Contact Situations
Date: 29-Sep-2008
From: Tamah Sherman <tamah.shermanff.cuni.cz>
Subject: Proselyting in First-Contact Situations
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Institution: Charles University
Program: Department of Linguistics, Faculty of Philosophy and Arts
Dissertation Status: Completed
Degree Date: 2007

Author: Tamah Sherman

Dissertation Title: Proselyting in First-Contact Situations

Linguistic Field(s): Sociolinguistics

Dissertation Director:
Jiri Nekvapil

Dissertation Abstract:

This study explores the process of proselyting as methodically
accomplished, learned, continually developed in particular situations, and
reflected by American Mormon missionaries in the Czech Republic. The
analysis is guided by four research questions: 1) How do missionaries 'do'
proselyting such that it is recognizable to them for what it is? 2) What
interactional work constitutes this process, and how is this work done
through the interplay of the organization of sequence, preference, topic
and category? 3) How do the participants in these proselyting situations
make relevant the given setting, in this case characterized by the contact
between Czech (local) and American (foreign) languages and cultures? 4) How
do the individual missionaries and their church 'behave toward language',
i.e. how do they manage language and cultural competence and their
manifestations through and for the purpose of engaging in proselyting
interactions? Recorded and transcribed first-contact public proselyting
situations are used as the primary data in this study, supported to a
lesser degree by participant observation, field notes, so-called
interaction and follow-up interviews, and document analysis.
Ethnomethodology, or the study of members' methods for producing and
recognizing features of talk, activities, or settings, is the main
theoretical approach. Conversation Analysis, Membership Categorization
Analysis, and Language Management Theory are used as the primary analytical
tools.



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