ERIC Number: ED224056
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1982-Nov
Reference Count: 0
Ethnography of Communication: Cultural Codes and Norms.
The primary tasks of the ethnographic researcher are to discover, describe, and comparatively analyze different speech communities' ways of speaking. Two general abstractions occurring in ethnographic analyses are normative and cultural. Communicative norms are formulated in analyzing and explaining the "patterned use of speech." Analysis of cultural communication specifies the "meaningful system of communicative behavior" that is governed by an intersubjective understanding of what is coherent and meaningful. While communicative norms specify the appropriate performance of speech, cultural communication places the performance in a particular interpretive context. Both normative and cultural analyses offer distinct and complementary insights into communication phenomena. The ethnography of communication as a perspective and method offers a productive way to describe and interpret human communication. An analysis of the film "High School" demonstrates the ethnographic approach to communication. A conversation in the film between a counselor, a student, and the student's mother illustrates a communicative norm (that teachers must be addressed with respect) and the cultural component (adolescent language). Other ethnographic research literature also illustrates these two abstractions. By focusing on communicative norms and ignoring the cultural codes in communication, researchers are missing sources in understanding the patterned use and meaning of human communication. (HTH)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Opinion Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: High School (Film)
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the Speech Communication Association (68th, Louisville, KY, November 4-7, 1982).