Harvey Sacksa s early death in 1975 robbed the social sciences of one of its most original thinkers. Although he published relatively little in his lifetime, his lectures and papers were enormously influential in sociology and sociolinguistics and they played a major role in the development of ethnomethodology and conversation analysis. The recent publication of Sacksa s Lectures on Conversation has provided an excellent opportunity for a wide--ranging reassessment of his contribution. In this new book, David Silverman provides a clear introduction to Sacka s work and reassesses its value for sociology, linguistics, anthropology and psychology. Using a variety of examples, he explains Sacksa s ideas on method, language and talk--in--interaction. He argues that Sacksa s work offers a highly original perspective on language and social life and raises fundamental questions for the social sciences -- questions which, after more than twenty years, remain vitally important and largely unanswered.
Written in a lively and accessible way, this book will be of particular interest to students of sociology, sociolinguistics, social theory and method, but it will also be of interest to students and researchers in anthropology, psychology and related disciplines.
Preface. 1. Beginnings. 2. An Intellectual Biography. 3. Social Science. 4. Method. 5. Membership Categorization Analysis. 6. Conversation Analysis. 7. Using Membership Categorization Analysis. 8. Using Conversation Analysis. 9. Sacksa s Legacy. Appendix 1. Simplified Transcription Symbols and Selected Abbreviations. Appendix 2. Sacksa s Lectures: Some Key References. Appendix 3. Summaries of Sacksa s Major Published Papers. References. Name Index. Subject Index.