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ERIC Number: EJ834162
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2009-Apr
Pages: 14
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: N/A
ISSN: ISSN-0889-4906
"We Have about Seven Minutes for Questions": The Discussion Sessions from a Specialized Conference
Wulff, Stefanie; Swales, John M.; Keller, Kristen
English for Specific Purposes, v28 n2 p79-92 Apr 2009
This paper discusses the "John Swales Conference Corpus" (JSCC), which contains the lectures and discussion sessions from an applied linguistics conference held in 2006 at the University of Michigan. This corpus constitutes a useful resource in that it provides insights into the language of a narrowly defined academic community. Moreover, it spans the entire series of conference presentations rather than just snippets, so it licenses the investigation of inter-textual links, semiotic spanning, and related co-textual phenomena. After a brief outline of the properties of the JSCC and a review of the relevant literature, we present three exploratory case studies, with a particular focus on the discussion sections. First, some major phraseological differences between the presentations and the discussion sections are identified. The second case study, focusing on the chairs' utterances, uncovers a high degree of regularity, especially with regard to opening remarks, and the chairs' attempts to downplay the authoritative role that they have been assigned. The third case study rounds off our exploratory analyses of the JSCC with a closer examination of the different causes of laughter in the discussion sections, which underscore how the language of discussion sections in a specialized conference is heavily influenced by shared professional knowledge and personal relationships among the participants. (Contains 4 tables and 1 figure.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Michigan