Using expletive insertion to pursue and sanction in interaction

Elliott M. Hoey*, Paul Hömke, Emma Löfgren, Tayo Neumann, William L. Schuerman, Kobin H. Kendrick

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review

Abstract

This article uses conversation analysis to examine constructions like who the fuck is that—sequence-initiating actions into which an expletive like the fuck has been inserted. We describe how this turn-constructional practice fits into and constitutes a recurrent sequence of escalating actions. In this sequence, it is used to pursue an adequate response after an inadequate one was given, and sanction the recipient for that inadequate response. Our analysis contributes to sociolinguistic studies of swearing by offering an account of swearing as a resource for social action.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3-25
JournalJournal of Sociolinguistics
Volume25
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 2020
Externally publishedYes

Funding

This research was supported by the Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research through Rubicon grant #44617010 for EMH and Rubicon grant #P0522734 for WS. This research was supported by the Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research through Rubicon grant #44617010 for EMH and Rubicon grant #P0522734 for WS. A previous version of this paper was presented in 2016 at the 15th Conference of the International Pragmatics Association in Belfast, Northern Ireland. We extend our thanks to Galina Bolden and Rebecca Clift for permitting use of their data, and to Gertie Hoymann, who contributed to early stages of data collection and exploration.

FundersFunder number
International Pragmatics Association in Belfast
Nederlandse Organisatie voor Wetenschappelijk Onderzoek44617010, 0522734

    Keywords

    • conversation analysis
    • escalation
    • response pursuit
    • swearing
    • upgrading

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