April 1, 2006

The 43rd Meeting of Mind and Activity

* The hours have been changed.
* A new presentation has been added.

Saturday, April 8, 2006

15:30 pm. - 19:30 pm.
Honkan (Main building)
Room 1501 (Note that the room will be different from the usual one.)
Meiji Gakuin University, Tokyo


  1. Domenic Berducci, Projecting and doing the verb: projection and Japanese grammar in instructing a Japanese technician

    Dear M and A participants:
    This analysis is on its way to completion for the Helsinki conference. Therefore, please treat it as partially as a complete M and A presentation, and partially as a data-session.

    This study focuses on one fragment extracted from the training of a technician by a biochemist in spectrographic analysis. Specifically, I focus on the putative disjunction of two types of speaker action: Talk that projects some as of yet unknown required action, and simultaneous non-verbal action that performs the as of yet unknown projected action. The multiple turns, in stepwise fashion, cumulatively project the verb of the biochemist's utterance (the proper cleaning of the test tube); while the biochemist's non-verbal action, simultaneously performs that projected verb.

    eProjectionf is a term variously used in CA. Its normal meaning orients us towards its use in describing a function of a turn or part of turn, that predicts speaker actions. Using projecting devices (grammar, prosody, semantics, and so on,.) as a resource, recipients can anticipate what actions will be performed and coordinate future actions. Here I use the term to describe talk and non-verbal action that grammatically projects an upcoming verb. (but at the same time, that actions enacts the verb). This particular verb is part of an instruction from the biochemist to the technician to clean a test tube. Japanese, canonically an SOV language (flexible), finds its verbs positioned at the end of utterances, and thus projected by earlier parts of those turns Any knowledge of what action to be performed on a grammatical object is delayed until a speaker explicitly states the verb. Additionally, Japanese has been found less grammatically projectable than English. This study will also demonstrate that in interaction separating grammar and interaction is not a viable alternative and that when considering non-verbal action as well as talk, Japanese is at least equal in projectability to English.

    The analysis will make public the seeming disjunction between the speakerfs non-verbal action and the simultaneous talk, and the hearerfs orientation to those actions. It will also attempt to show that the meaning of the biochemist's non-verbal conduct emerges through its sequential position in the progress of the turns. Finally, the analysis will demonstrate the participantsf use of emerging grammatical resources to increase gradually the certainty of the projection to the point where the participants coordinate their actions.

  2. Eric Hauser, Character presentation through the enactment of an ostensibly prior conversation

    [Eric will present a paper for the Helsinki conference (ICCA 2006). -AN]

    One thing that people sometimes do in conversation is enact or reenact part of another conversation in which they were a participant and which, ostensibly, occurred prior to the current conversation. One thing that can be accomplished through such an enactment is the presentation of one's character, such as the presentation of oneself as a caring, thoughtful friend. Based on recordings of telephone conversations made by Linda Tripp, and later released to the public by Special Prosecutor Kenneth Starr, this paper analyzes and compares two cases in which Tripp enacts what would appear, to the analyst at least, to be the same prior conversation for two different audiences, Monica Lewinsky and a woman with whom Tripp is conspiring to collect information for the purpose of attacking President Clinton. In each case, the enacted conversation is enacted as a two-party conversation in which another woman is giving Tripp information and advice for her to convey to Lewinsky. The analysis focuses on the talk that Tripp attributes to the other woman and the specific features of this talk that Tripp orients to in the process of enacting the conversation. While the talk that is attributed to the other woman in each of the two cases is quite different, in both cases Tripp uses this talk to present herself in a positive light as someone with an emotional attachment to and protective feelings for Lewinsky. It is shown that when an ostensibly prior conversation is enacted, claims may be made not only about what was said by whom, but also about how it was said and the type of person for whom it was said.

  3. Aug Nishizaka, Referential practice in a prenatal ultrasound examination

    I will bring the data for the Helsinki conference (ICCA 2006), together with some analytical notes on them.

    Through the analysis of interaction between a doctor and her client, a pregnant woman, in a prenatal ultrasound examination, this study focuses on the way in which references are accomplished as a feature of a distinct activity. The data were collected in an obstetrical and gynecological clinic in Tokyo, Japan. During a prenatal ultrasound examination, the doctor often points to an image on the monitor with a ko-prefixed locative deictic term, namely, a deictic term for the speaker's immediacy, to show the client her uterine and/or fetal condition. The doctor's reference is contingently accomplished in a way appropriate to the current activity that the parties, the doctor and the client, engage in, as some CA work has demonstrated However, there are subtle differences in what those references are to. Some cases are, indeed, observed where the doctor's references are spatially distributed, once between the image on the ultrasound monitor and the client's abdomen, and at another time between the image on the monitor and the calibrations on the monitor's control panel. That is, reference is made at the same time to a part of the image on the monitor and a spot of the abdomen, for instance. I attempt to show how each distributed reference is contingently accomplished in a subtle way that is very sensitive to the sequential development of the current activity, such as the activity of demonstrating the normality of the development of the uterus (or the fetus) or the activity of solving a problem with the visibility of the details of the fetal conditions. The marked nature of those references is thus shown to be a distinctive feature of the current activity.