'Identity' attracts some of social science's liveliest and most passionate debates. Theory abounds on matters as disparate as nationhood, ethnicity, gender politics and culture. However, there is considerably less investigation into how such identity issues appear in the fine grain of everyday life. This book gathers together, in a collection of chapters drawing on ethnomethodology and conversation analysis, arguments which show that identities are constructed 'live' in the actual exchange of talk. By closely examining tapes and transcripts of real social interactions from a wide range of situations, the volume explores just how it is that a person can be ascribed to a category and what features about that category are consequential for the interaction.
Charles Antaki is Senior Lecturer in Psychology at the University of Lancaster. He is editor of Analyzing Everyday Explanation (SAGE, 1988). My primary interests, theoretical and empirical, are in self and identities, including personal and social identity and cultural variations in self-conception and individuality. I have participated in contemporary theoretical and methodological debates surrounding the concept of self and subjectivity and I am concerned to develop empirical approaches to understanding these complex issues. Further, related interests are in social groups, especially youth culture and subcultures; cross-cultural psychology and psychological anthropology; poststructuralism; and Arab identities. I also have an interest in language use, especially conversation and discourse analysis.
Identity as an Achievement and as a Tool - Charles Antaki and Sue Widdicombe PART ONE: SALIENCE AND THE BUSINESS OF IDENTITY The Relevant Thing about Her - Derek Edwards Social Identity Categories in Use How Gun Owners Accomplish Being Deadly Average - Andy McKinlay and Anne Dunnett 'But You Don't Class Yourself' - Sue Widdicombe The Interactional Management of Category Membership and Non-Membership Identity Ascriptions in Their Time and Place - Charles Antaki 'Fagin' and 'The Terminally Dim' PART TWO: DISCOURSE IDENTITIES AND SOCIAL IDENTITIES Identity, Context and Interaction - Don Zimmerman Mobilizing Discourse and Social Identities in Knowledge Talk - Robin Wooffitt and Colin Clark Talk and Identity in Divorce Mediation - David Greatbatch and Robert Dingwall PART THREE: MEMBERSHIP CATEGORIES AND THEIR PRACTICAL AND INSTITUTIONAL RELEVANCE Describing 'Deviance' in School - Stephen Hester Recognizably Educational Psychological Problems Being Ascribed, and Resisting, Membership of an Ethnic Group - Dennis Day Handling 'Incoherence' According to the Speaker's On-Sight Categorization - Isabella Paoletti PART FOUR: EPILOGUE Identity as an Analysts' and a Participants' Resource - Sue Widdicombe
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