This is the first monograph to examine mediated business interaction in Spanish. It focuses on communication between native speakers of Spanish from different Spanish-speaking countries with a view to informing our understanding of intercultural communication in a contemporary business environment. Using elements of pragmatics with tools from conversation analysis, the book examines the various activities that telephone conversationalists engage in to supply and demand a service over the phone through the mediational means of Spanish by addressing the following questions. * Do speakers of Spanish display similar communicative practices as those observed in other languages when requesting and being offered a service over the phone? * Do specifically located activities such as the call openings and closings display similar coordination and ritualisation as that observed in other languages? * Does the language seen as a cultural tool reflect a different orientation towards such activities? * What strategies do telephone agents and (prospective) clients employ to obtain a sale and either procure the best value for money or obviate it, respectively?
And, what role does intercultural communication play in the construction of these practices?
Rosina Marquez Reiter is Senior Lecturer and Programme Director, MA in Intercultural Communication with International Business and MA in Communication and International Marketing, University of Surrey.
Acknowledgements List of Figures Chapter 1 Introduction 1.1 Mediated business (inter)action 1.2 Service encounters over the phone 1.3 Call centres and intercultural communication 1.4 On the ordinary-institutional continuum 1.5 Why openings and closings? 1.6 Previous research on openings and closings in institutional calls Chapter 2 Methodology 2.1 Background to the research 2.2 Data and ethics 2.3 Documentary analysis 2.4 Non-participant observation 2.5 Interviews 2.6 Telephone conversations 2.7 Analytic perspective Chapter 3 Openings 3.1 Introduction 3.2 Inbound calls 3.2.1 In-house rules for opening inbound calls 3.2.2 Opening sequences of inbound calls 3.3 Outbound calls 3.3.1 In-house rules for opening outbound calls 3.3.2 Opening sequences in outbound calls 3.4 Concluding comments Chapter 4 The Negotiation of the Business Exchange 4.1 Introduction 4.2 The middles of inbound calls: fabricated ignorance 4.3 The middles of outbound calls 4.3.1 In-house rules for placing outbound calls 4.3.2 First attempt calls: camouflaging 4.4 Follow-up calls: honouring arrangements 4.5 Some concluding comments Chapter 5 Closings 5.1 Introduction 5.2 In-house rule for closing calls 5.3 The English archetype closing 5.4 Practices for closing Spanish service calls 5.4.1 Arrangements 5.4.2 Summarised upshot of the conversation topic 5.4.3 Prior turn repetition 5.4.4 Reiteration of the prior material 5.4.5 Reason for the call 5.5 Foreshortened and extended closings 5.5.1 Foreshortened closings 5.5.2 Extended closings 5.6 Some concluding comments Chapter 6 Some Final Reflections: Toward an Understanding of Intercultural Communication in Spanish 6.1 Introduction 6.2 Mediated intercultural communication across Spanishes 6.2.1 On ambivalent si and unequivocal no 6.2.2 Hiding behind the name of 'Difference' 6.3 Some final reflections Appendices References Index